Apple’s HealthKit has gotten a lot of press lately, but the company has just recently started working with two U.S. hospitals using the HealthKit system. The hospitals include the Stanford University Hospital and the Duke University Hospital.
Both hospitals are using HealthKit with some patients in order to detect things like blood sugar levels, weight measurements, and blood pressure, Reuters reports.
The news today that Apple has started working with the two university hospitals is really the first glimpse that the tech world has seen into the way that HealthKit will work. Here’s what else has been learned about HealthKit this morning.
A Faster Way to Send Data
HealthKit works with Apple’s iPhone to obtain and track health data quickly. Currently, a patient’s health details are tracked and recorded via phone and fax, which is really technology that’s quite outdated if you think about current tech. Apple’s idea is to make this kind of health reporting simpler by using an iPhone connected with the HealthKit app.
Physicians at Stanford University are currently tracking blood sugar levels in children that are suffering from diabetes. Duke University physicians are using the same technology to track blood pressure, weight, and various other vital statistics in patients that are suffering from cancer and heart disease.
While Stanford and Duke are the two hospitals that are the furthest into working with Apple, Reuters has previously reported that Apple is working with a number of different hospitals. So, you can expect to hear more about Apple’s HealthKit being used in various hospitals across the United States very soon.
While Apple’s HealthKit technology is very clearly useful, some people worry that the company won’t be able to keep health information safe from hackers. Were hackers to be able to tap into various health details, this could put some people at major risk. However, Apple has ensured the public that the company is working very hard on making sure that the system remains secure, and Apple has recently created a “HealthKit Certification” program for third party developers. This certification program includes details about how health information should be stored and used.
The other advantage to Apple’s HealthKit is that it will quickly provide a way for physicians to track patient data when a patient is living at home or in a care facility. By simply looking at an app, for example, a physician can tell whether or not a patient is progressing well or becoming worse.
Apple’s technology could completely revolutionize the way that health data is tracked and stored, and this could lead to more preventions, better cures, and even a way to stop disease in its tracks. For now, the experiments remain with certain subjects in certain hospitals, but you’re likely to hear more about this technology really soon - the program is expected to take off across a number of hospitals shortly.
Would you feel comfortable storing all of your health data in one place? Do you trust Apple to keep this information secure?