Apple Has Changed The Game For Researchers In Recruiting People For Trials. But Doctors Remain Skeptical.
Through Apple's various products, researchers have been able to run sweeping studies that would have never been possible before. But doctors wonder if it will really lead to improvements in health outcomes. “This is the big question. Is this ‘so what’? Or are we going to learn something meaningful we don’t know yet?” asked Dr. Ethan Weiss, an associate professor of medicine at the University of California. Meanwhile, details continue to come out about "Project Nightingale," Google's initiative to collect patients' health data.
The New York Times:
Apple’s Reach Reshapes Medical Research
In 1976, the Harvard School of Public Health and two other major medical institutions started a study on nurses that has become one of the largest and longest research efforts ever conducted on women’s health. They have so far enrolled more than 275,000 participants. On Thursday, the Harvard school announced an even more ambitious women’s health study, one that aims to enroll a million women over a decade. The new ingredients allowing the huge scale: Apple’s iPhones, apps and money. (Singer, 11/14)
Apple Launches App To Let Users Enroll In Health Studies
People who download the research app would be able to enroll in studies including Apple Women's Health Study, Apple Heart and Movement Study and Apple Hearing Study, the company said in a study. After enrolling, participants using Apple Watch and iPhone can contribute useful data around movement, heart rate and noise levels, captured during everyday activities, from taking a walk to attending a concert. (11/14)
In A ‘Wild West’ Environment, Hospitals Differ Sharply In What Patient Data They Give Google
In deals struck across the U.S., hospital systems appear to be adopting starkly different protocols for sharing personal health information with Google (GOOGL), fueling broad concerns about the ability of patients to control the use of their data. In a controversial collaboration with the hospital chain Ascension, Google gained access to millions of patient records, including names and birth dates, so it could use its artificial intelligence tools to analyze the information. The arrangement has triggered a fact-finding review by federal regulators. (Ross, 11/15)
Ascension, Google Blowback Hints At Providers' Next Tech Hurdle
A partnership between Ascension and Google has sparked public pushback and a federal probe into whether the companies followed federal privacy laws before releasing patient data. But healthcare experts say the reaction to the deal likely has less to do with Ascension sharing patient data, and more to do with the partner they chose. "The truth of the matter is patient data gets used by the healthcare institutions that they have visited—often," said Michael Abrams, managing partner at healthcare consultancy Numerof & Associates. (Cohen, 11/14)
Lawmakers Call For HIPAA Updates Following Google's Data Deal
Sens. Jacky Rosen (D-Nev.) and Bill Cassidy (R-La.) introduced legislation to stop the sale of health data from consumer wearable devices Thursday as Congress responded to outrage over a data-sharing deal that gave Google access to millions of patients' detailed records. The arrangement, which Google and the Ascension health system maintained is legal, has irked patient and privacy advocates who find it unacceptable that neither patients nor clinicians gave consent to share their data with the tech giant. (Ravindranath, 11/14)