The Singapore government and Apple recently announced their partnership on the health initiative LumiHealth, a personalized program to encourage healthy activity and behaviors using Apple Watch. The program was designed by Singapore’s Health Promotion Board (or HPB, a statutory board under the Ministry of Health) in conjunction with Apple as part of the country’s Smart Nation initiative, a national effort to leverage technology to deliver benefits to its citizens and businesses.
The LumiHealth app, designed with user privacy and security at its core, is available in the App Store for pre-order now, and the two-year program will be offered from late October 2020. An Apple Watch is necessary to participate, as is downloading the LumiHealth app from the App Store.
WHAT IT DOES
LumiHealth harnesses the power of Apple Watch to encourage and empower Singaporeans and residents to adopt healthy habits through personalized reminders, programs, activity coaching, and incentives. Within the app, users travel through worlds with a friendly intergalactic explorer who guides them through tasks that are personalized based on their age, gender, and weight.
LumiHealth was created with customer privacy and data security built into its design. The program is voluntary: Users must opt in and provide consent to share information with LumiHealth when they join, and may opt out at any time. The collection of any personal identifiable information will be limited to information that will enable the app to provide an experience that is personalized and relevant to the user’s needs. All user data will be encrypted to protect privacy.
The program also reminds users to go for health screenings and immunizations, and participate in wellness challenges that aim to improve sleep habits and mindfulness as well as encourage better food choices. By completing these goals and challenges, users help the intergalactic explorer get back home, all while being able to earn rewards worth up to S$380 over the two-year duration of the program.
According to the official statement, LumiHealth is the culmination of a two-year process that began with Singapore soliciting proposals from international healthcare and technology companies on ways to enrich the lives and health of its population.
THE LARGER TREND
It is not the first time that the Singapore government has collaborated with big tech companies to promote health and wellness for its citizens through digital technologies and gamification.
Last August, Fitbit partnered with HPB in a national public health initiative called Live Healthy SG, designed for Singapore by Fitbit to harness technology, behavior insights and analytics to help Singaporeans get healthier through meaningful and sustained behavior change, MobiHealthNews reported.
Live Healthy SG leverages the full Fitbit ecosystem of wearable devices, software and services, including programs, guidance and individual 1:1 health coaching that will be offered through its new Premium service for participants who sign up for the program.
In the past, initiatives such as the National Steps Challenge (currently in its 5th season and has ended) by HPB encourages participants to hit 10,000 steps daily with incentives such as vouchers and attractive lucky draw prizes.
ON THE RECORD
“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 own personal health,” said Heng Swee Keat, Singapore’s Deputy Prime Minister. “This partnership between Singapore and Apple will enable Singaporeans to lead healthier lives, but equally important, it will contribute valuable insights to improving the health of people all over the world.”
“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,” said Jeff Williams, Apple’s chief operating officer. “Apple Watch has already helped millions of our customers manage their activity levels to improve their health, and we look forward to applying our expertise here in the same privacy-friendly way that distinguishes all Apple products and services.”