Obesity is the number one health concern that needs to be tackled using health technologies during the next 12 months, a government minister has said.
During a keynote speech today at the AXA PPP Health Tech & You Forum at the design museum, George Freeman MP, Life Sciences Minister highlighted that even though cancer and heart disease cause the most deaths in the UK each year, obesity is the health condition people most search for online.
The AXA PPP Health & You State of the Nation survey of 2,000 people found 57% of respondents were most concerned with tackling obesity as compared to Diabetes (15%), Cancer (9%) and Heart Disease (8%).
George Freeman MP, said: "These findings are a wake-up call about the importance of digital health tech in combatting the rising burden of chronic disease through earlier diagnosis, better treatment and reduced hospital stays.
"With today's patients hungry for additional support via apps, monitoring devices and other health technology solutions, we need to ensure that the NHS is working together with patients to accelerate access to modern health technology."
The AXA PPP survey also revealed 43% of people believe that the NHS should provide health technology free of charge to help people improve their overall health.
Meanwhile 44 % of respondents said health technologies could help them manage a long term health condition
Nearly half of respondents (48%) live in a household that contains someone with a long term health condition
Over the next five years respondents feel the most commonly used health technologies will be pedometers (23%), wristband/watch (22%) and fitness related smartphone apps (18%.)
The age group most open to health technology are aged between 18 and 44. Some 42% cent of 18-44 year olds agreed that health technology would positively impact their health if they used it regularly. This is in comparison to those aged 45-54 (30%) and 55+ (23%)
James Freeston, marketing director at AXA PPP healthcare, said, "Nothing could be more personal than your own health. We and our Health Tech & You partners believe personal health technology is the new age, giving more control to consumers to live healthier and more active lives.
"This new research clearly demonstrates the public demand for health technology to help combat conditions like obesity. Health technology, and the public's desire to use it, has now reached a stage where existing public health campaigns focussing solely on advertising, posters and leaflets have to be questioned."