Test City X Activate

,   4 minute reading

Life expectancy for Estonians is higher than ever before, but we rank second to last in the European Union in terms of healthy life years. Healthspan is the maximum number of years that a person lives a full life without any chronic disease. According to the latest data from Statistics Estonia, the average number of healthy life years is 55.9, which is 10 years shorter than the EU average.

This means that people in Estonia spend nearly a third of their lives suffering from various chronic diseases that have a major impact on their quality of life and significantly increase healthcare costs.

Cardiometabolic diseases, i.e. heart diseases, and diabetes ̶ which are the most common and costly chronic diseases in Estonia and the world ̶ are the biggest contributors to years of healthy life lost.

Ülemiste City Pilot Project

In order to analyse the health status of Ülemiste City employees, Activate Health, a health technology start-up company operating on the campus, carried out a unique project called Activate100 in cooperation with the University of Tartu, SYNLAB, and Ülemiste City companies.

A total of 100 people from Ülemiste City were included in the project. They underwent a comprehensive blood test, body composition analysis, blood pressure measurement, a 3-minute step test, and a special dynamometer arm grip strength test to determine their level of physical fitness.

Of the participants, 44% were under 29 years old, 44.1% were aged 30–44, 9.7% were aged 45–54 and the rest were aged 55+. An equal number of men and women were selected for the programme.

By their own estimation, all participants considered themselves to be healthy and free of chronic health problems. However, the results of the health checks were worrying, to say the least:

80% of blood tests had values outside the reference range

40% of body composition analyses had indicators outside the reference range

20% were immediately sent to their family physician for a follow-up check-up

Participants in the programme then completed a 100-day micro-coaching programme led by leading Estonian doctors and coaches, which included activities on movement, nutrition, sleep and stress management. Many were able to significantly reduce their health risks, confirming the importance of timely prevention and early intervention.

The project revealed that, in the case of many of the people who had believed themselves to be perfectly healthy, it was possible to detect the first signs of the development of a chronic disease at the molecular level of the organism. Our modern sedentary lifestyles, unhealthy diets, poor sleep quality, and constant stress have created a breeding ground for an explosion of lifestyle diseases.

From analysis to solution

The pilot project led us to the conclusion that the only way to change this trend is to give people better tools to manage their physical and mental fitness.

As a result, we developed a comprehensive health management app, which we gave to Ülemiste City employees to test within the framework of the Test City project. Employees from Skeleton, Playtech, Thermory, Technopolis, Mainor, SYNLAB, and Ellex Raidlas participated in the project.

User interviews were conducted with 19 people, along with 4 workshops and a large number of brainstorming sessions. The main problems identified by workers when it came to taking care of their own health are the fast pace of life, which does not allow them to take enough care of themselves, and the difficulty in maintaining long-term motivation to follow different health programmes.

With this in mind, we set out to develop the Activate health app into a smart everyday assistant that helps you make smart decisions to improve your physical, mental and social health, and keeps you motivated when adopting new habits.

As a result of the project, we launched the revamped Activate health app in May, which now includes the new Activate Rewards programme. By using the app, the user collects health points on a daily basis, participates in exciting prize draws and will soon be able to start exchanging points for real health services. To do this, we are working with leading Estonian health brands such as SYNLAB, Confido, MyFitness, and others.

All Ülemiste City employees can try the Activate health app free of charge for 30 days.

Activate is a health management app developed in collaboration with Estonian doctors and researchers to help users take their physical and mental fitness to the next level.

See more

Related news

All news

Latest news

All news