As health care reform changes the landscape of senior care for providers, tech giant Apple is looking to tap into the market with an electronic health record (EHR) product that the company hopes will make it easier to track patients’ health data, Reuters reports.
Previously, experts suggested the adoption rate of EHR technology could see an uptick among senior living organizations this year, as they might be more willing to use the tech to better position themselves in the market. As of June, nearly 66% of surveyed senior living organizations were investing in electronic health and medical records, according to Ziegler’s 2014 Technology Spending report.
And with the rumored September release of Apple’s “HealthKit” service, the Cupertino-based firm may soon be tapping into the $9 billion-plus mobile health care market, becoming a mainstay for big-name health providers.
Apple unveiled the service in June, announcing that it could collect and store a user’s fitness and health information all in one app, called “Health,” which will be available only through the iOS8 operating system — expected to be released with the iPhone 6 in less than a month.
The company has been in talks with health providers at Mount Sinai, the Cleveland Clinic and Johns Hopkins, as well as with Allscripts Healthcare Solutions (NASDAQ:MDRX), a competitor to electronic health records provider Epic Systems, to discuss how the tool will work for caregivers and patients.
“While the talks may not amount to anything concrete, they underscore how Apple is intent on making health data, such as blood pressure, pulse and weight, available for consumers and health providers to view in one place,” Reuters writes.
This type of data is being collected by thousands of third-party health care software applications and medical devices, but isn’t yet centrally stored — a feature Apple hopes to tap into in order to allow physicians to better monitor patients between visits (with the patient’s consent) so the doctors can make better diagnostic and treatment decisions, Reuters reports.
Previously, Apple had announced partnerships with Nike Inc, Epic and the Mayo Clinic.
“Dozens of major health systems that use Epic’s software will soon be able to integrate health and fitness data from HealthKit into Epic’s personal health record, called MyChart, according to a person briefed by Apple,” Reuters reports. “Kaiser Permanente is currently piloting a number of mobile apps that leverage HealthKit, two people have said, and is expected to reach out to Apple to discuss a more formal partnership.”
Read the full Reuters article here.
Written by Emily Study