Scientists say they have created an online test which can predict the likelihood of an individual dying within the next five years.
The UbbLE Risk Calculator asks respondents aged between 40-70 a series of questions about their background, lifestyle and health, including walking speed, number of cars owned and marital status.
Claiming an 80% accuracy rate, it is based on research into the lifestyle and health measurements of nearly half a million people (a large scale project named UK Biobank) and was publicised in the 3 June edition of medical journal The Lancet.
In comments reported by Sky News, Dr Erik Ingelsson, who was involved in the study, said: "The fact that the score can be measured online in a brief questionnaire, without any need for lab tests or physical examination, is an exciting development.
"Of course, the score has a degree of uncertainty and shouldn't be seen as a deterministic prediction.
"For most people, a high risk of dying in the next five years can be reduced by increased physical activity, smoking cessation and a healthy diet."
A disclaimer on the site states:
“However, in general, risk calculators can never predict the future for any specific individual in a deterministic sense, and should be interpreted on a population level. For example, if the risk of dying within five years is 2%, this means that out of 100 people of the same age, sex and risk profile, 98 will survive and 2 will die over the next 5 years. The result is in no way intended to be an accurate prediction of the relevant risk related to a specific person.
“THIS WEBSITE DOES NOT PROVIDE MEDICAL OR PROFESSIONAL SERVICES ADVICE.
“The information provided is not intended or implied to be a substitute for medical advice offered by a healthcare professional. If you desire or need such services or advice, regarding the information contained on this website or otherwise, you should consult a professional healthcare provider.”
Take the test here.