Cupertino, California – Apple announced its new framework called CareKit on a press conference on March 21, 2016. The app is the logical evolution of ResearchKit which was aimed to help specialist collect data. The new application gives people control over their health.
Care Card reminds people to take medication or complete physical therapy. The information can be tracked by sensors in an Apple watch and the data can be kept within the app. There is a feature that lets people record their symptoms and how they’re feeling, take pictures, measuring pain levels and fatigue. The inside dashboard allows a patient to try out different treatments and see if they are working. Finally, connect makes it very simple for people to share the information with doctors and caretaker teams.
“One of the things physicians tell us is that one of the most important things affecting outcome of surgery is actually what you do during the recovery process,” said Jeff Williams, Chief Operating Officer at the announcing event. “Yet we go from being monitored by a team of highly trained specialists using leading edge technology to being discharged with this — a single sheet of paper.”
Since it is an open source framework, developers can freely build on it. There are lots of organizations already working on the platform. The Texas Medical Center is using the app to remotely help their patients. One Drop is helping people manage their diabetes. Start encourages people on antidepressants to use the software and test if the treatment is working. Glow, Inc incorporated CareKit into its pregnancy application to provide guidelines to women during pregnancy.
With the app, the user can set a customized a button to warn other people about an emergency. For example, if you are having a stroke or seizure, a simple tap on your Apple watch will tell whoever you want what is happening. This feature has incredible potential at reducing times of response in extreme cases.
One thing that worries a lot of people is their privacy. Apple assures that they will work under the doctor-patient confidentiality policy. Only you and your doctor should have access to your data.
ResearchKit allowed thousands of people to participate in screenings. Anyone can go to the app and voluntarily participate in one of the many studies. The information collected is helping organizations from all around the world to carry on studies that are expensive and otherwise impossible to go on with. With CareKit, Apple wants to empower people by giving them the tools to properly track their health in a practical way.