In the last few weeks, nine more health systems have signed on to support Apple’s new “Health Records” initiative.
The new institutions were announced on Twitter by Ricky Bloomfield, M.D., who is working at Apple as a clinical and health informatics lead.
In January, Apple announced that it would be testing the Health Records feature out with 12 hospitals, inclusive of some of the most prominent healthcare institutions in the U.S. Then in March, Apple tripled the number of health systems participating, from 12 to 39, and announced that the new capability was available to all iPhone users with the latest iOS 11.3 update. Now, as of an Aug. 2 update from Apple, approximately 80 provider institutions are on board with the project.
According to Apple, the updated Health Records section within the Health app brings together hospitals, clinics and the existing Health app, with the aim to make it easy for consumers to see their available medical data from multiple providers whenever they choose.
Consumers who are participating will now have medical information from various institutions organized into one view covering allergies, conditions, immunizations, lab results, medications, procedures and vitals, and will receive notifications when their data is updated. Health Records data is encrypted and protected with the user’s iPhone passcode, Apple officials attest.
In May, Apple also introduced a Health Records API (application programming interface) for developers and researchers. The new API, set to be delivered starting this fall, will enable developers building health apps to individualize experiences, with the user’s permission, based on the user’s unique health history, Apple officials have said.
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