Jay Olshanksy: Facial analytics will detect disease in the future

The Chief Scientist and Co-Founder of Lapetus Solutions presented "Smart health: A new longitudinal source of health data & facial analytics" at the Health monitoring: Making sense of sensors conference at the Swiss Re Centre for Global Dialogue. The event brought cutting edge medical, health and fitness wearables producers and platforms together with Swiss Re's clients and experts, to examine how wearable technology will impact consumers and insurers.

Click here to find out more about the event.

Read a text version of the video below:

"How does the facial analytics program work? It basically operates the same way the human eye operates. It looks for wrinkles, age spots, gray hair, the exact same things that you observe in making a determination of old versus youngest except the computer does it infallibly.

The original work that we had done was for the military. Some of the initial work on facial analytics was developed to identify people for the FBI that the FBI was looking for.

My work on biodemography was designed to identify subgroups of the population that are higher risk of dying and find a way to raise all longevity and health both simultaneously.

How does facial analytics benefit insurance companies? Think of it this way. It's not just facial analytics. Facial analytics is really just a way of independently verifying smoking status and body mass index. In the future it will be used to detect disease. What's the real value is when you mix it together with an understanding of basic biology and the biological forces that influence how long we live. Once you combine those together, you have a mechanism of understanding duration of life and risk in a way that's never been done before in the industry.

What will people with lower life expectancies have a harder time finding insurance? Look, you have to realize that even if you compare the differences between the longest living and shortest lived subgroups of the population, honestly while it's true that they vary somewhere between 10 to 15 years, most people that have life expectancies that are 15 years shorter than the other subgroups of the population aren't really applying for insurance. It's really going to benefit the vast majority of the population that's already interested in insurance or already has insurance. I don't think it's going to be an issue."