New Guide Reveals Most Health Apps Not So Helpful

14 September 2015

Minister for Health Jill Hennessy today warned Victorians to be wary when downloading health and wellbeing apps, with a new Australian-first ratings system revealing many are ineffective and poorly designed.

With VicHealth, the Minister today launched the Healthy Living Apps Guide. The Guide rates more than 200 phone apps that claim to help people eat better, move more, quit smoking, reduce their alcohol consumption, and improve their mental wellbeing

The highest score provided was three out of five stars – a score which only five apps achieved.

The top apps were Freeletics – Workout and Training, Quit Now: My Quit Buddy, Get Some Headspace, Water Balance and UP – Tracker Required.

The worst app of the 200 reviewed was Smoke Free – Finally Non Smoking, which achieved just half a star.

The Healthy Living Apps Guide is the first independent, evidence-based review into the effectiveness of health and wellbeing apps. Apps were rated based on their quality, user-friendliness and effectiveness.

Earlier this month, the Andrews Labor Government released the Victorian Public Health and Wellbeing Plan 2015-2019 that outlines the Government’s vision to create a healthier Victoria.

The six key areas for action to improve the health and wellbeing of all Victorians include healthier eating and active living, tobacco free living, reducing harmful alcohol and drug use, improving mental health, preventing violence and injury, and improving sexual health and reproductive health.

The Plan was developed in consultation with over 200 people from leading health organisations, local governments and healthcare service providers.

For health advice, Victorians are encouraged to visit the Better Health Channel website, which features an extensive range of quality assured information about health and healthy living.

The Healthy Living Apps Guide can be found at Link

Quotes attributable to Minister for Health Jill Hennessy

"These days, there seems to be an app for everything.”

“Some apps can be a great way to achieve a healthier lifestyle, but some may not be as useful as they claim."

"This independent Guide is a great way for Victorians to find an app that will be effective and useful for them to achieve their goals.”

Reviewed 19 August 2020

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