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New features of the iPhone Health app make it easier for doctors to access information.



Those with smartphones and wearables often come to the doctor’s office with an app reading that details everything from heart rate to sleep patterns. With the new iOS 15 update this fall, some iPhone users will be able to send data directly from the Health app to their doctor’s electronic medical record system.

Libo Wang, a cardiologist at the University of Utah School of Medicine who studies wearables, said this type of integration would make it easier for patients to share information with their doctors. “The current workflow is quite difficult. and require patients to email PDFs and doctors to manually upload that file to create a permanent record in an official electronic medical record,” he said in an email to The Verge.

Users Can Now Pull Data Another Way: As of 201

8, Apple has allowed people to add records from dozens of clinics and hospitals to their Health app.

The new integration will work with six US electronic medical records companies, including Cerner, which controls about a quarter of the market, and five smaller segments, Apple said, adding more could be added. Physicians using records from those companies will be able to open shared data within their patients’ health records. The dashboard opens as a web view directly within the record. It doesn’t direct the provider to another external app. The designs are similar within the record for each of the six companies, Apple said.

Health app data is not transferred directly to electronic health records. The doctor can view a window with information. But the data is not permanently added to the log if iPhone users decide to stop sharing their health data. There will be no one in the health record. The system is built using a framework called SMART on FHIR, which is an open interface for third-party applications that can run within electronic health records. use platform

For physicians, especially cardiologists Direct access to iPhone data within health records can help them use the data in a more meaningful way, Wang said. One 2020 study found that when doctors directly examined a strap created by an Apple Watch that showed heart rate, they could use the data more meaningfully, Wang said. of the heart of the user with the eyes They were able to identify more cases of abnormal heart rhythms than flagged clock algorithms. If the rhythm strip is being used directly with someone else’s doctor The doctor may be able to identify a related pattern.

Although the downside is the potential for too much data, Wang said, more data isn’t always better. Especially if the doctor doesn’t trust the accuracy of the information. Although the information collected by wearables and smartphones may seem beneficial to patients, But it’s not clear whether the information actually helps people feel better or provide better care.

Cerner, one of the electronic medical records companies that participated in the initial launch. Apple’s new features can be tested at on-site clinics for employees. “Having a safe way to view and share this information in a clinical context is helpful,” said Sam Lambson, the company’s vice president of collaboration.

It’s becoming increasingly common for patients to take health data from their personal devices for check-ups, and Lambson said Cerner is focused on efforts to integrate that information into their systems. Even outside of Apple’s new program, one advantage of the Apple system is that it’s easy for doctors to use, said Jessica Oveys, director of product management at Cerner.

“I think the key is to empower and make the patient feel centered and safe. and make them easy to share But it also presents the information in a way that is actionable and relevant to physicians,” she said.


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