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Jockey Club We WATCH Healthy Lifestyle Project

"Jockey Club We WATCH Healthy Lifestyle Project": Helping Middle-aged People Improve Their Lifestyle Habits and Prevent Chronic Diseases

The Jockey Club School of Public Health and Primary Care, The Chinese University of Hong Kong and four local non-governmental social service organizations –Christian Family Service Centre, Hong Kong Young Women’s Children Association, St. James' Settlement, and United Christian Nethersole Community – co-organise The "Jockey Club We Watch Healthy Lifestyle Project". The Project’s tagline is "Improving your lifestyle is the key to good health". The Project aims to assist middle-aged people to improve their lifestyles to prevent or postpone the onset of chronic diseases.

The main causes of ill health, disability, and premature deaths are chronic diseases. Data from the Census and Statistics Department show that the number of middle-aged people in Hong Kong who suffer from chronic diseases is increasing. According to the World Health Organisation, common chronic diseases include cardiovascular diseases (such as heart attacks and stroke), cancer, chronic respiratory diseases (such as chronic obstructive pulmonary disease), and diabetes. Most non-communicable diseases (“NCDs”) can be prevented by changing behaviours and adopting a healthy lifestyle; for example, by having a healthier diet, increasing physical activity, and quitting smoking and alcohol.

The "Jockey Club We WATCH Healthy Lifestyle Programme", which is funded by the Hong Kong Jockey Club Charities Trust, is the first public health initiative in Hong Kong to adopt the “lifestyle medicine” concept to assist the general public in preventing chronic diseases. The Project seeks to enrol over 20,000 people in health risk screenings, and then offer qualified participants health coaching on how to improve their lifestyles and health knowledge.

"Qualified participants will receive health coaching for six months, during which time health coaches will help them raise awareness of healthy lifestyles and learn how to improve their lifestyle habits,” said Professor Samuel Wong Yeung-shan, Director of the Jockey Club School of Public Health and Primary Care and Project Director. To achieve the goal of "prevention is better than cure," participants are going to use smartwatches and the project mobile application to help monitor their health data. The health coaches have received a health coach training programme run by the CUHK The programme includes effective communication skills with motivational interviewing techniques as well as health information about various lifestyle habits like physical activities, nutrition, and stress management.

The program is currently open for applications. If you are interested, please visit the project website for more information and follow the project’s social media platforms on Facebook and Instagram for the latest information.

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