Apple’s HealthKit May be Tipping Point for Mobile Telehealth

vital biometrics and wearable tech

Vital biometrics and mobile devices are enabling patients to receive 24 hour health monitoring while freeing up bed space in hospitals.

Apple’s new HealthKit app, released along with its iPhone 6, could offer the tipping point for the healthcare industry to shift into mobile-first telehealth services, suggests Michael Colombo on Calgary Scientific’s Healthcare Blog.

Apple’s HealthKit collects and users health information through the new iPhone’s advanced biometric sensors, which can detect steps, distances traveled, and even changes in elevation. Colombo points not just to these sensors’ metrics but to the HealthKit platform’s standardization of their data as a game-changing development: With 90 million wearable health devices projected to be sold this year, the ability to agglomerate their myriad datasets into one uniform set of data that allows for meaningful analysis could be an enormously useful development for healthcare professionals and their patients.

Medical researchers in the academic world are already leaping into this field, with Stanford University teaming up with Apple to monitor the blood sugar levels of diabetic children, and Duke University working on an app that can track important cardiac measures for users at risk of heart disease. Meanwhile, the private sector is already seeing companies like HealthLoop and American Well leap into action, developing healthcare apps of their own to take advantage of the new mobile biometric technologies.