This article is for informational purposes only. Aflac herein means American Family Life Assurance Company of Columbus and American
Family Life Assurance Company of New York. WWHQ | 1932 Wynnton Road | Columbus, GA 31999.
are now experimenting
with 3D-printing organs.
Benefits: Let’s say an
employee’s child needs
a prosthetic hand—
printing it at home could
drastically lower the cost.
The Internet of Things
has ushered in access
to real-time sensor data.
Wearable tech makes it
possible to monitor health factors such
as our blood pressure and the amount of
exercise we get. This helps consumers
manage health decisions proactively.
Small Business Benefits: Wearables
can motivate employees to make
positive lifestyle choices—a friendly
office competition can help your team
reach their daily step goals—leading to
more productive and healthier people.
Some of the biggest advances may
come from innovations unrelated to
healthcare. For example, smarter cars
can help prevent accidents and the
resulting broken bones and injuries.
“A significant amount of Aflac’s accident
and hospital claims come from car
accidents,” says Farley. “Innovations
in cars, traffic safety and even hands-free driving laws can go a long way in
preventing accidents and injuries from
Small Business Benefits:
Accident-free employees are a win-win
Innovating to make your small
business better, today: From a
SmartClaim® app to integrated
enrollment technology, Aflac offers our
small business clients tools to make
work easier, today.
For more check out
The company wanted to give kids facing cancer treatment a
comforting companion—and Aflac’s iconic quacking symbol
was a natural fit.
The designers immersed themselves in the Aflac Cancer and
Blood Disorders Center of Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta.
They looked on as patients as young as 3 years old coped with
chemotherapy and the sheer exhaustion of living in a hospital
environment. “Emotionally, it’s the hardest design work I’ve
ever done,” says Chung, Sproutel’s chief creative officer.
From early on, the designers’ goal was to help provide comfort
and joy to kids facing cancer—and they did it by learning from
children and dreaming up innovative technology solutions.
Today, My Special Aflac DuckTM as the cuddly companion is
aptly named, has four patents pending. There’s a removable,
washable skin, devised after discussions with the hospital’s
infection control staff. Beneath that skin hides a fully
animatronic robot, which engages with a Bluetooth-enabled
app. All that tech made one pretty special duck.
My Special Aflac Duck TM dances, nuzzles and even has
a heartbeat. Kids can feed and bathe the duck, go on
adventures through an interactive app designed for mobile
devices and tablets, and engage in medical play such as
administering “medicine” through a chemotherapy port, not
unlike their own. Emotion cards help the duck (and the child)
express how they feel—from sad to sick to silly. Every action is
designed to help bring comfort and joy to kids in treatment.
This fall, Aflac will begin delivering 10,000 of these special
ducks to children newly diagnosed with cancer at no cost to
“The thought of 10,000 of these ducks on their way to kids is
incredibly exciting,” Horowitz says.
This was the question facing Aaron
Horowitz and Hannah Chung,
cofounders of the design company
Sproutel, a startup launched in 2012,
when they started collaborating with
Aflac to create My Special Aflac Duck TM.
What can a special duck
do for a kid with cancer?