– Research shows number of years people are spending in ill health is increasing, due to the rising prevalence of chronic diseases, driven by unhealthy lifestyles
– Experts call for focus on healthspan, the quality of life, alongside lifespan, the quantity of life, citing significant economic and social benefits
– Pioneering algorithm by Vitality, in collaboration with RAND Europe, can for the first time predict an individual’s healthspan (the number of years lived in good health) and future health risks
LONDON, Oct. 12, 2021 /PRNewswire/ — Vitality today reveals research results quantifying the widening gap between lifespan (life expectancy) and healthspan (the number of years lived in good health) globally, reflecting a diminishing quality of life in later years. Alongside this research, Vitality and RAND Europe have developed a pioneering algorithm that allows individuals, for the first time, to understand how their lifestyle choices impact both their length and quality of life, enabling them to take actions to maximise the number of years spent in good health in the future.
The research and algorithm were launched at Vitality’s global conference with keynote speakers Professor Yuval Noah Harari and Discovery / Global Vitality CEO, Adrian Gore, to debate solutions for improving the future health of individuals and populations.
The research highlights an average 15% increase since 1990 in the number of years that people will spend in ill health over their lifetimes, from 8.5 years to 9.8 years, which equates to approximately 18% of the average lifespan. This outcome follows health strategies that prioritise treatment over prevention, and technologies that enable people to live longer with disease. Currently, the world spends $8.5 trillion or 10% of GDP on healthcare delivery with only 5% going towards prevention. Reducing the disease burden by just 10% through more preventive policies and behaviour change could prevent up to 93 million healthy years of life being lost globally each year.
The new algorithm, developed by Vitality in collaboration with RAND Europe, will provide individuals with a personalised view of their lifespan and healthspan, as well as bespoke recommendations for improving these measures, delivered in a way that best resonates with them. This world-first public calculator of individual healthspan – the Vitality Healthy Futures calculator – will be available to the public on: https://vitality.international/ from 12 October 2021 for a limited time.