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It’s safe to say that 2020 has put the spotlight on the impact ill health can have on anyone. The pandemic has demonstrated that no one is immune from becoming sick and it’s made us think more carefully about how we view and manage our health.
Aviva recently conducted a survey to ask respondents how they view their health and wellbeing. The results are in their report ‘The changing health landscape.’ They’ve split the insights into three key areas:
Exercise and eating more healthily are the most common ways people are taking care of themselves. Nearly 90% of respondents who made changes during the first lockdown believe they’ll keep up these new healthy habits in the future, a sign that we want to stay well. Mental health has proved to be a major concern, with 39% of respondents feeling more concerned about their mental health now than before the pandemic. Respiratory and dietary health were also flagged as concerns. People are worried for themselves and their loved ones, particularly their parents. But although many people are worried about the impact their mental health has on their wellbeing, they may not know where to access advice or support.
84% of their respondents believe waiting times for medical appointments will be higher as a result of the pandemic, and 79% of these are “a bit” or “very” worried about it. COVID-19 has already placed huge pressure on the healthcare system. Accessing digital services can help with many aspects of our health, with apps for everything from mindfulness to nutritional advice. We can also use the online world to get support in preventing illness from developing, access health screening remotely, or access specialist treatment for specific conditions.
It sounds obvious but being in the best of health is one of the most effective ways of staying well. Of course, this doesn’t apply to all conditions, but a healthy person is likely to be better equipped to cope with sickness than someone who doesn’t take good care of themselves. Supporting each other to do the best we can in this regard is critical. Identifying possible risks and taking action to reduce that risk can have a lasting impact on our health, now and in the future. 60% of respondents haven’t had a health check in the past 12 months, but nearly half said they’d be more likely to take up the opportunity for a health check now than before the pandemic.
Aviva recently launched the Aviva DigiCare+ smartphone app, available to eligible advised individual protection customers. Powered by Square Health, the app offers a range of tools and resources, provided by carefully selected third parties, to help with some of the issues raised in the report.
The app gives access to both mental health and nutrition consultations, areas Aviva know are causing their respondents concern. Eligible family members can use these benefits too - great news for people worried about their loved ones.
To help those concerned about appointment waiting times, the app offers access to a nurse helpline, a second medical opinion service and an optional paid for Digital GP Service, complementing NHS services and providing an alternative way of seeking help.
And for those wanting to take preventative steps to protect their health, an annual health check done at home looks at cholesterol, diabetes and gout risk as well as kidney, liver and bone health, helping you to stay one step ahead when it comes to your health.
Aviva DigiCare+ is a non-contractual benefit Aviva can withdraw at any time.