Big data

Digital Healthcare Is Fighting Fit

doctor showing patient results on digital tablet
A doctor shows a patient results on digital tablet.
  • Why it matters

    Why it matters

    Technology giants such as Google and Apple are increasingly releasing apps that monitor people’s health. But the software raises tricky questions about privacy and consent.

  • Facts


    • Apple’s new Care Kit is a collection of apps that can be used to monitor various health indicators.
    • Such software can serve as an early warning system to prevent heart attacks and dangerously low blood sugar levels.
    • Digital innovations have radically changed the way diseases such as cancer are diagnosed and treated.
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When Apple unveiled its new products in March, everyone was focused on the fact that the iPhone was getting smaller and cheaper. The company’s innovations in the healthcare field seemed less spectacular, even though it has what it takes to completely revamp healthcare.

The tech giant unveiled the so-called Care Kit, a collection of app-based applications through which patients can, for example, be monitored after an operation in the future. Parkinson’s patients, diabetics and people with depression can also use apps and smartphones to monitor their illness.

The new technology provides patients with medication schedules, information on how to move and what to eat, and the ability to share their data with their doctor or a nurse. It also includes an emergency notification function.

Apple isn’t the only company to introduce these innovations. Other technology companies, such as IBM, Google and SAP, are also pushing into the healthcare business and forming joint ventures with pharmaceutical companies and medical device makers to improve monitoring of chronically ill patients.

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