As a wise man once said, prevention is always better than cure, which is why over the past few decades, doctors and health professionals are constantly expounded on the benefits of eating healthily and exercising regularly.
In recent years, Singapore’s Health Promotion Board (HPB) has taken bigger steps in order to promote a healthier lifestyle among Singapore citizens, such as with the National Steps Challenge, which only recently ended its fifth season. With the Challenge, participants only needed to download an app and clock the necessary amount of steps, ranging from 5,000 to 10,000, a day to earn points which can then be exchanged for rewards. All you need is a phone, a tracker and an app.
Well, the Singapore government is ready to take things to the next level and the HPB has chosen to team up with Apple in a new national health initiative, LumiHealth, a two-year programme that will be offered exclusively to Singaporeans from late October, 2020.
The great part of working with a great ecosystem of hardware and software is that it was relatively to tap on the full features of the Apple Watch. The seamless integration allows users to access numerous tools and apps to stay fit and take note of a user’s well being, such as the Activity Rings, ECG and oxygen level measurements, and even fall detection.
As for why Apple was selected, being the leader in wearable fitness technology probably helped. Plus it seem that both Apple and the Singapore government have the same shared conviction in helping people live better, longer, and happier lives.
On their part, Apple has also noted that health is a very important initiative for the company, with CEO Tim Cook often stating that it will be an area where the company is able to “make the biggest difference in the world”
Once Lumihealth is enabled, users will be required to complete various activity goals and challenges to help an intergalactic explorer get back home and along the way, be able to earn rewards of up to S$380 over the course of the two-year duration of the LumiHealth initiative.
To make sure that LumiHealth is able to meet users where they are and ensure that they have the best possible start to their health fitness journey, Apple and HPB have ensured that the challenges users will face at the start of their LumiHealth journey are specially catered for them, meaning that it’s not a one size fits all approach to health and exercise.
As different users come from different age groups and points of their lives, especially with age, gender, and weight involved, there is an algorithm that adjusts the user’s goal over time, so that the activity goal is not too hard, not too easy, but just within reach to keep that person motivated.
Of course, with all the data sharing going on in LumiHealth, some users might have concerns regarding who has access to person health records, but Apple has assured users that they are taking a “very serious approach” not just with the user experience in terms of challenges and goals to complete, but also the privacy of each participating user.
It is also worth noting that the programme is entirely voluntary, with users having to opt-in if they wish to participate. Users will be made aware of what they are signing up for in terms of data sharing before they give their consent to participate.
To participate in LumiHealth, it will be necessary for participants to own an Apple Watch, and the LumiHealth app can be downloaded directly from the App Store. The programme will be available in late October and will run for a period of two years.
Germaine is a fun-sized introvert who loves nothing better than sleeping in on rainy days. She can be found reading fanfiction and manga while still waiting for her Hogwarts acceptance letter. It’ll come eventually.