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Apple Health and the mHealth Field

iOS8 was released this past Wednesday, September 17, and its newly integrated apps are being thoroughly explored. One of these apps is the “Health” app, an official app integrated into the software. The app comes automatically installed on any iPhone with iOS8, and it cannot be deleted. With Health, Apple is putting a face on their much discussed HealthKit, and providing an interface for the customer. The app collects data from other health and fitness apps, and provides a reference location for all of a user’s health data. With a sleek interface, the app is an attractive health dossier for the user. There are neatly organized sections for  variety of data types, including blood pressure records, nutrition records, and a section for results such as blood glucose and inhaler usage. With HealthKit for developers, all other health and fitness apps for iOS8 are able to easily input their data into Health, streamlining the process for any iPhone user wanting to monitor an aspect of their physical state. The health app is good for day to day monitoring, for example someone on a diet or someone keeping track of their various heart rates. The app is also, however, an excellent tool for doctor’s visits and those with chronic illness. It provides the ability to easily access information and share or reference it.

Apple HealthKit and the Health app show the promise of mobile healthcare. The launch of the integrated Health app is a huge step of legitimacy for the mobile healthcare field, and by pioneering this integration Apple is engineering significant growth for mHealth. Now every iPhone user is faced with mobile healthcare, raising concerns and questions which in turn offer possibility for innovation and refinement in mHealth. Apple has brought mobile healthcare to the forefront of the general public, and those who were ignorant before now have a rudimentary knowledge that such a field even exists. Whether or not HealthKit and the Health app succeed, the fact is that their release should be celebrated, simply for the reason that they are paving the way for important healthcare modernization.

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