The Strategist

Apple CareKit is now available for developers

04/29/2016 - 18:05

CareKit, a new programming environment from Apple created to give everyone the opportunity to actively monitor their health, is now available for developers.
iPhone applications, which use CareKit, help people monitor implementation of medical recommendations, manifestation of symptoms and medication taking. The ability to transmit information to doctors, nurses and family members through CareKit application allows people to be proactive in maintaining their health.

"We were shocked by how much ResearchKit infuenced the pace and scope of medical research. We have realized that this approach can be useful in the field of medical supervision at the individual level", said Apple's COO Jeff Williams. We are convinced that a tool allowing everyone to get a clear idea of the state of his health has enormous potential, and applications that are based on CareKit, embody these possibilities into reality and allow people to participate in the treatment more actively."

According to Fast Company, CareKit team for several months has been working with three startups that have received early access to the new environment. Applications such as One Drop for diabetics, Glow for monitoring reproductive health, and Iodine, designed to control the use of antidepressants, have already presented their updated versions with integration into CareKit. In the near future, the developers also promise to come out with an application for people suffering from respiratory diseases, including asthma.

CareKit includes four initial modulus created by Apple:

•    Care Card, which helps monitor the implementation of the treatment plan and follow medical advice, e.g. for taking medication or physical therapy classes. Performance on the necessary actions can be tracked and recorded automatically via Apple Watch or iPhone.

•    Symptom and Measurement Tracker, which allows easy recording of symptoms and state of health, including measuring the temperature and catching infections at early stages, as well as to assess the severity of pain or fatigue. Information about the health’s dynamics may include simple profiles, photos of how the wound is healing, as well as data on physical activity, calculated using iPhone’s accelerometer and gyroscope.

•    Insight Dashboard, which displays relationship between presence of symptoms and implementation of recommendations according to the Care Card, and demonstrates the treatment’s effectiveness.

•    Connect, which helps share information on health and changes in the state, as well as discuss these issues with doctors, specialists and family members.

Developers of health and preventive care apps are going to build CareKit modules in apps for patients with Parkinson's disease, to monitor the application of the postoperative state health, surveillance at home, diabetes management, protection of mental health and maternity protection.

Sage Bionetworks Organization and University of Rochester used CareKit to turn mPower – a research based on ResearchKit - in a practically useful tool that will help more accurately inform patients about their condition, and care professionals - about the features of the treatment.

Texas Medical Center is developing applications that allow controlling the course of treatment of 8 million patients and help provide it, as well as improve the interaction of patients with medical experts on health issues.

Medical Center Beth Israel Deaconess will provide patients with more information about the course of chronic diseases treatment with the help of home monitoring devices ensuring safe storage of data in HealthKit.