Apple makes ResearchKit available to Devs and researchers

ResearchKit has the capacity to truly change things. Today, Apple is letting Developers and researchers realize its promise, and has opened ResearchKit up to anyone who wants to contribute. Developers are now free to develop apps that utilize the framework, and researchers can begin new studies to aide in ramping up their studies. Announced at Apple's March event, ResearchKit uses an iPhone as a diagnostic tool when users opt-in to providing data. On launch, Apple and a few select partners had medical studies relating to Breast Cancer, Parkinson's Disease, Asthma, and Cardiovascular Disease.

Jeff Williams, Apple's Senior Vice President of Operations, had the following to say in announcing ResearchKit was now available:

We are delighted and encouraged by the response to ResearchKit from the medical and research community and the participants contributing to medical research. Studies that historically attracted a few hundred participants are now attracting participants in the tens of thousands. Medical researchers all over the world are actively exploring how ResearchKit can help them study even more diseases, and we believe the impact on global understanding of health and wellness will be profound.

Kenneth Mandl, MD, MPH, of the Boston Children's Hospital Informatics Program, said "Because of the ubiquity of iPhone and the elegant implementation of consent, survey and instrumented data collection, ResearchKit has enormous promise for leading the transformation of how we engage patients in research. Now that we have access to the ResearchKit framework, our team can start customizing the initial modules and even design new ones for our particular study."

Developers can also contribute research modules to ResearchKit's framework, which is open source. Apple is also keeping ResearchKit totally opt-in, where participants will need to provide consent before involving themselves. Apple also never sees your info — it heads straight to the doctors or researchers.

Source: Apple