HPB partners Apple to promote healthy lifestyle; S'pore residents can earn rewards of up to $380 for using app

LumiHealth is tailored to Singapore users in terms of health issues that are important to the population here. PHOTOS: APPLE

SINGAPORE - Your Apple Watch could soon beep to remind you when it is time for your health screening or immunisation, thanks to a new app developed by the Health Promotion Board (HPB).

Called LumiHealth, the free app, to be launched in late October, will also help users set fitness goals and healthy eating targets after drawing behavioural insights from the users' sleeping, health and fitness activities.

It is part of Singapore's national drive to promote a healthy lifestyle through the use of technology.

Developed by Apple and public health experts at HPB, LumiHealth is tailored to Singapore users in terms of health issues that are important to the population here, according to HPB.

Personalised nudges and reminders about physical activity levels or diet can, for instance, help prevent or delay the onset of illnesses and chronic diseases such as diabetes or to better manage these diseases.

Deputy Prime Minister Heng Swee Keat said in a statement on Tuesday (Sept 15): "Even as all of us around the world are dealing with the challenges of Covid-19, we must keep investing in our future. And there is no better investment than in our personal health.

"This partnership between Singapore and Apple will enable Singaporeans to lead healthier lives."

Apple's chief operating officer, Mr Jeff Williams, said: "Singapore has one of the world's leading healthcare systems and we are thrilled to be partnering with them to incorporate Apple Watch and LumiHealth into their holistic approach to well-being."

Fitness goals are gamified in the app, with a friendly character guiding users through different worlds and tasks, personalised according to age, gender and weight. These tasks include weekly activity goals that can be met by walking and swimming, as well as yoga and other activities.

Users can also take part in wellness challenges that aim to improve sleep habits as well as encourage better food choices.

For the two-year span of HPB's LumiHealth programme, users who complete these tasks and challenges will be able to earn rewards worth up to $380 in HPB eVouchers from stores like FairPrice, Sheng Siong and Tangs.

The app also reminds users to go for health screenings and relevant immunisations based on their demographic profile details such as age and gender.

LumiHealth is open only to Singapore residents aged 17 years or older with a SingPass account. It requires an iPhone running iOS 13 or later, and an Apple Watch with at least watchOS 6.

Data and health insights gathered by LumiHealth will help shape future health initiatives for improving the quality of lives of Singaporeans. However, the sharing of health data is dependant on the user's consent.

The collection of personal identifiable data is minimised and used only to administer the programme, for example, using e-mail addresses to ensure that the correct incentives are awarded to the right participants.

The data will be coded, secured and stored in Singapore.

Asked why the app is available only on Apple Watches, HPB said its long-term goal is to work with various device and technology partners "to increasingly leverage technology for our programmes".

"This will create an ecosystem of technology-enabled health promotion programmes that can target different segments of the population," the agency said.

While LumiHealth is designed specifically for Apple Watches, HPB said those who have other wearable devices can take part in other healthy living programmes such as the National Steps Challenge.

LumiHealth will complement other HPB population-wide programmes, such as the Healthy 365 app (available on both Android and iOS), to reach as many Singaporeans as possible.

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