Where's My Rewards Program For Asthma?

Where's My Rewards Program For Asthma?

Less than a week after my return from Zurich, I’m already looking at booking another flight, to Philly. I logged into my Mileage Plus account (given I could not get my Aeroplan card to work to enter for points for this flight!) and saw a shiny 12,000 miles in there. Some technical difficulties are currently afoot given I am not American and wanting to order something shiny (I’m 40% of the way to an Apple Watch!), but I digress.

In the process of a points inventory, I check my credit card: 11,289 points—20% of the way to an Apple Watch, or I could buy several of several varieties of cell phone power banks, or maybe I’m now able to buy the tiny drone. The next program, though, is the closest I’ve got to a “rewards program for asthma"!

Points, points, points

I then log into my big chain pharmacy’s app, and check my number of Shoppers Optimum points—I’m pleased to see a reward points value of 75,873 points, or $115 in there. Previously, I’ve used these points for such items as a dust mite proof mattress cover which happened to also be on sale and not crinkly (win), random small-ticket items, a Bluetooth toothbrush (a $199 value—I redeemed $175 of points, the highest level, and received a $30 mail-in rebate prepaid credit card), and all but about $40 of a Nintendo 2DS with Mario Kart back in May. (I was in Ottawa at the time for World Asthma Day and then proceeded to lay on the bed in my hotel room between meetings and play Mario Kart, like any reasonable adult.)

Fairly recently, the points structure changed for what is earned on pharmacy purchases in the Optimum program. This is how I get the majority of my points, despite the fact that a provincial drug program pays for the bulk of my medicine. Clearly they got wise to this and decreased the number of pharmacy purchase points that you can get—oh well, it was fun while it lasted!

Finding the fun in asthma: Where’s my rewards program?

Sometimes, you have to find the fun in asthma. For me, it’s on occasion derived of those pharmacy points, that then force me to buy random items.
Now, where’s my points program for the rest of my asthma life? I once jokingly made an asthma task RPG to get points gamifying my asthma experience, but I got bored of that quickly. I want the real deal. Can’t I get points for REAL STUFF for just taking my inhalers and gong to the doctor and exercising? it’s true, some insurance companies are trying to figure out ways to “gamify” health, so that people are more motivated to take better care of themselves and (perhaps) have better and less costly health outcomes down the road. Finally, someone is finding—and putting—value into preventative healthcare. The RPG points system isn’t quite enough though, people want stuff.

So, where is that for my life? I’m not even a hardcore points collector over here (although I am partial to Shoppers Optimum as above, and Starbucks Rewards, specifically). I’d be pretty pleased if my asthma gave me a free cookie or coffee, or heck yes, an Apple Watch, every once in awhile, just to say I’m doing a good job!

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