Be on the lookout for Apple Health, a new app that will share multiple inputs of patient information in a cloud platform called “HealthKit.” This HealthKit will allow a user to view a personalized dashboard of health and fitness metrics, which conglomerates information from a myriad of different health and wellness apps, and helps them all “communicate” with one another.
Apple may also be collaborating with a number of academic medical centers and electronic health record (EMR) companies (including Epic which controls 40% of the current EMR business), to determine how to innervate this new technology into healthcare systems. The primary purpose of this is to capture and maintain a patient’s engagement in their own health and wellness, a longstanding issue yet to be solved by the medical industry. But this also may be the next major healthcare breakthrough innovation to ease the burden of care continuity, which is the root cause of many US healthcare industry ailments (high cost, average quality, mediocre patient satisfaction, etc). Mayo clinic is reportedly collaborating with Apple to develop an app which alerts patients when any of their health and fitness metrics are “out of range.” This HealthKit should be able to act as a health “dashboard”, mini-EMR, and personal coach, all rolled into an easy-to-use app with personalized security settings.
We should all anxiously await what Apple will release, with the hopes that it will enhance patient health, wellness, engagement, and continuity.
Dr. Scheurer is a clinical hospitalist and the Medical Director of Quality and Safety at the Medical University of South Carolina in Charleston, South Carolina, and is Assistant Professor of Medicine. She is a graduate of the University of Tennessee College of Medicine, completed her residency at Duke University, and completed her Masters in Clinical Research at the Medical University of South Carolina. She also serves as the Web Editor and Physician Advisor for the Society of Hospital Medicine.