Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
FAQs
What is the HELIOS Study?

What is the HELIOS Study?

Health for Life in Singapore (HELIOS) is a research study that aims to understand the health of the Singaporean population. Our study is trying to find out how the lifestyle, environment and genes of Singaporeans may influence their health. Participants will undergo a research health screening where a variety of measurements and biological samples will be taken. The data collected will be used to improve the prevention, diagnosis, and treatment of a wide range of health conditions, such as heart disease, diabetes, cancer and other chronic diseases.

Who is eligible to participate in the HELIOS Study?

All Singaporeans and Permanent Residents who are aged 30 – 84 years old are eligible to participate in the HELIOS Study, even if you have pre-existing medical conditions.

How do I register?

You can contact us by phone or book a slot here.

How long will the health-check take?

It will take approximately four hours.

Will I get a medical certificate or participant attendance letter?

We cannot give you a medical certificate for a research study, however, we will give you an attendance letter on request.

Can you take walk-ins?

We do not accept walk-ins as this will affect other participants’ appointments. To avoid disappointment and reduce waiting time, you are strongly encouraged to contact us or click here to book an appointment.

If I have medical conditions or had a recent major injury/illness/surgery or am a cancer survivor, can I participate?

You may participate as long as your major injury/illness/surgery occurred at least a month ago. If you had cancer, we advise you to only make your appointment at least one year after you completed your cancer treatment.

I am already enrolled in a study, can I still take part in this study?

Yes, you can participate if you are enrolled in another observational study that does not involve drug treatment. If you are involved in a drug trial, you should wait at least one month after completing the trial before making an appointment with HELIOS.

Can I accompany my friends/relatives for the scheduled visit?

Yes.

If I am going to turn 85 years old next month, can I still join the study?

We are recruiting participants aged 30 – 84 years, thus please book your appointment early with us before you turn 85 years old. We count your age as at appointment date.

What is the difference between a research health-check and health screening?

The difference is that the data samples we collect will primarily be used for research and not for routine clinical care.
Registration/Rescheduling

How do I register?

You can contact us by phone or book a slot here.

If I took part in the pre-pilot or pilot study, can I participate in the main study?

Yes, however we shall schedule your appointment 6 months later.

I have just donated blood/ planning to donate blood. May I still join the study?

Yes, there are no restrictions for blood donors.
Pre-Arrival

What do I need to bring on the day?

Please bring your NRIC, reading aids if you require and any medication that you take regularly.

Do I need to fast?

We would like you to fast for at least 8 hours prior to your appointment. This means nothing to eat or drink apart from water. If you have a morning appointment please fast from midnight the night before.

Am I allowed to take my medication before my screening visit?

If you are coming in the morning, do not take your medication before you come as you will be fasting. Instead, take your medication immediately after your tests.

What should I wear on the day of my appointment?

We recommend that you wear light, comfortable clothing (e.g. sports attire) and comfortable shoes. Please don’t come in high heels or sandals, as there will be a walking test on a treadmill.

Will refreshments be provided?

Yes, light refreshments will be provided after blood draw.

If I am unable to attend my appointment for personal reasons or I am unwell, what should I do?

Please contact us and we will help rearrange your appointment.

Can I skip the blood draw?

The blood sample is very important to the research. If you are uncomfortable with us taking your blood, you should not participate in the study.

How much blood do I need to provide?

We will ask you to give a sample of about four tablespoons (60 ml) of blood. This is perfectly safe, and is about one-tenth of the amount given during a blood donation.

Can I skip any of the stations if I am not comfortable with them?

All of the stations are important to the research, and our staff are qualified and highly competent to conduct all tests safely. There may be 1 or 2 stations that we ask you to skip for medical reasons. We would like you to complete all the other stations. However, if you are feeling unwell, you can stop at any time.

Can I still come for the screening when I am having my menses?

Yes.
Reimbursement

Will I get any reimbursement for transport?

There will not be any reimbursement for transport, however we are pleased to offer you a token of appreciation, $50 via GIRO. Please provide your preferred bank account number.
Withdrawal from the study

Can I withdraw from the study after registration?

Yes, you may withdraw anytime from the study. Please contact us and we will process your request.

Will I be compensated if I drop out?

If you choose to drop out from the study without completing all the stations, we will not be able to offer you any compensation for your visit nor your health report.

What will happen to my data if I withdraw from the study?

You have the right to request for any data that has been collected about you to be deleted, and for any of your remaining samples to be destroyed.
Post Visit

Will I get a health report of my results?

Yes, you will receive a personalised health report within two months of completing your health-check. This will be posted to you. If you do not receive a copy, please contact us to get a duplicate sent. Please click here for a sample report.

Will I be contacted by HELIOS in the future?

You may be contacted for additional research studies in the future. However, you are not obliged to participate.
What do we do with the results collected?

What will happen to the samples you collect from me?

The samples will be stored long term (probably more than 20 years) and used for a range of biomedical studies.

May I know what tests will be conducted to find out how our genes may influence our health?

Over the years ahead, we expect to carry out a range of different tests to investigate the relationships between genes and gene variance with health and well-being. This might include looking at single genes, but might also include studying the complete sequence of DNA (genome sequencing). Because these tests are being done for research, and their significance is uncertain, results of genetic tests will not be reported back to participants.
What is the HELIOS Study?

What is the HELIOS Study?

Health for Life in Singapore (HELIOS) is a research study that aims to understand the health of the Singaporean population. Our study is trying to find out how the lifestyle, environment and genes of Singaporeans may influence their health. Participants will undergo a research health screening where a variety of measurements and biological samples will be taken. The data collected will be used to improve the prevention, diagnosis, and treatment of a wide range of health conditions, such as heart disease, diabetes, cancer and other chronic diseases.

Who is eligible to participate in the HELIOS Study?

All Singaporeans and Permanent Residents who are aged 30 – 84 years old are eligible to participate in the HELIOS Study, even if you have pre-existing medical conditions.

How do I register?

You can contact us by phone or book a slot here.

How long will the health-check take?

It will take approximately four hours.

Will I get a medical certificate or participant attendance letter?

We cannot give you a medical certificate for a research study, however, we will give you an attendance letter on request.

Can you take walk-ins?

We do not accept walk-ins as this will affect other participants’ appointments. To avoid disappointment and reduce waiting time, you are strongly encouraged to contact us or click here to book an appointment.

If I have medical conditions or had a recent major injury/illness/surgery or am a cancer survivor, can I participate?

You may participate as long as your major injury/illness/surgery occurred at least a month ago. If you had cancer, we advise you to only make your appointment at least one year after you completed your cancer treatment.

I am already enrolled in a study, can I still take part in this study?

Yes, you can participate if you are enrolled in another observational study that does not involve drug treatment. If you are involved in a drug trial, you should wait at least one month after completing the trial before making an appointment with HELIOS.

Can I accompany my friends/relatives for the scheduled visit?

Yes.

If I am going to turn 85 years old next month, can I still join the study?

We are recruiting participants aged 30 – 84 years, thus please book your appointment early with us before you turn 85 years old. We count your age as at appointment date.

What is the difference between a research health-check and health screening?

The difference is that the data samples we collect will primarily be used for research and not for routine clinical care.
Registration/Rescheduling

How do I register?

You can contact us by phone or book a slot here.

If I took part in the pre-pilot or pilot study, can I participate in the main study?

Yes, however we shall schedule your appointment 6 months later.

I have just donated blood/ planning to donate blood. May I still join the study?

Yes, there are no restrictions for blood donors.
Pre-Arrival

What do I need to bring on the day?

Please bring your NRIC, reading aids if you require and any medication that you take regularly.

Do I need to fast?

We would like you to fast for at least 8 hours prior to your appointment. This means nothing to eat or drink apart from water. If you have a morning appointment please fast from midnight the night before.

Am I allowed to take my medication before my screening visit?

If you are coming in the morning, do not take your medication before you come as you will be fasting. Instead, take your medication immediately after your tests.

What should I wear on the day of my appointment?

We recommend that you wear light, comfortable clothing (e.g. sports attire) and comfortable shoes. Please don’t come in high heels or sandals, as there will be a walking test on a treadmill.

Will refreshments be provided?

Yes, light refreshments will be provided after blood draw.

If I am unable to attend my appointment for personal reasons or I am unwell, what should I do?

Please contact us and we will help rearrange your appointment.

Can I skip the blood draw?

The blood sample is very important to the research. If you are uncomfortable with us taking your blood, you should not participate in the study.

How much blood do I need to provide?

We will ask you to give a sample of about four tablespoons (60 ml) of blood. This is perfectly safe, and is about one-tenth of the amount given during a blood donation.

Can I skip any of the stations if I am not comfortable with them?

All of the stations are important to the research, and our staff are qualified and highly competent to conduct all tests safely. There may be 1 or 2 stations that we ask you to skip for medical reasons. We would like you to complete all the other stations. However, if you are feeling unwell, you can stop at any time.

Can I still come for the screening when I am having my menses?

Yes.
Reimbursement

Will I get any reimbursement for transport?

There will not be any reimbursement for transport, however we are pleased to offer you a token of appreciation, $50 via GIRO. Please provide your preferred bank account number.
Withdrawal from the study

Can I withdraw from the study after registration?

Yes, you may withdraw anytime from the study. Please contact us and we will process your request.

Will I be compensated if I drop out?

If you choose to drop out from the study without completing all the stations, we will not be able to offer you any compensation for your visit nor your health report.

What will happen to my data if I withdraw from the study?

You have the right to request for any data that has been collected about you to be deleted, and for any of your remaining samples to be destroyed.
Post Visit

Will I get a health report of my results?

Yes, you will receive a personalised health report within two months of completing your health-check. This will be posted to you. If you do not receive a copy, please contact us to get a duplicate sent. Please click here for a sample report.

Will I be contacted by HELIOS in the future?

You may be contacted for additional research studies in the future. However, you are not obliged to participate.
What do we do with the results collected?

What will happen to the samples you collect from me?

The samples will be stored long term (probably more than 20 years) and used for a range of biomedical studies.

May I know what tests will be conducted to find out how our genes may influence our health?

Over the years ahead, we expect to carry out a range of different tests to investigate the relationships between genes and gene variance with health and well-being. This might include looking at single genes, but might also include studying the complete sequence of DNA (genome sequencing). Because these tests are being done for research, and their significance is uncertain, results of genetic tests will not be reported back to participants.