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Individual Shift Work Management Tool ‘Zest’

Monash University &The University of Sydney led the development of an individual shift work management tool on the back of extensive user testing and sleep-wake management model development. The tool provides personalised and adaptive sleep health advice and feedback for individuals with variable sleep times imposed by shift work, and is based on a sleep-wake management algorithm that draws on biomathematical modelling to provide adaptive recommendations for individual users (sleep/wake times, countermeasure usage, light exposure and avoidance).

The algorithm engine is linked to the Zest mobile application that presents optimal sleep wake management recommendations and countermeasures in the context of other user-defined work and lifestyle constraints.

Efficacy study outcomes from a cohort of shift working nurses showed that use of the Zest application improved insomnia symptoms, reduced sleep related impairments, and improved sleep hygiene. Additionally, significant improvements for mental health outcomes were observed, including anxiety and stress.

The Zest mobile application is currently being updated for deployment beyond the healthcare sector to other shift working industries, with randomised control research trials in preparation led by ASAC partner Monash University.