Take diabetes. You and I know diabetes is type 1 and type 2. But Mass General’s study of type 2 diabetes found that some people respond completely differently to therapies than others, supporting the theory that there are actually subtypes of type 2 diabetes, helping pave the way for precision medicine for the future.
Some of the world’s most respected institutions have released ResearchKit studies, covering a wide range of diseases and conditions that affect billions of people around the world. ResearchKit is opening up all kinds of possibilities. I’d like to show you a video to tell you more about it.
[Video Presentation: ResearchKit was created with the goal of improving medical research. A year later, we’re seeing app developers, doctors and even patients take these ideas and make them more powerful than we could have ever dreamed. ]
You know, when we introduced ResearchKit, our goal was simply to improve medical research and we thought our work was largely done. But what you probably saw in the film and what became clear to us later is the very same tools used to advance medical research can also be used to help people with their care.
Let me give you an example. In the Parkinson’s study, patients do test several times a day on their iPhone, like that simple tap test you saw in the video, to assess their symptom levels. And researchers can see the symptom level across a range of days and they can see this before and after medication. And there are lots of patients like patients A where you can see that symptom levels improve post medication. In other words, the medicine’s working. But there were also a lot of patients like patient B where post medication there’s no improvement at all, their symptom levels didn’t change. In other words, the medicine’s not working. The patient either needs a different dose or different medication or maybe no medication at all but today neither the individual nor the caregiver has this information. And we think empowering people with data about their health is incredibly important. So today we’re launching CareKit.
CareKit is a framework to build apps that empower people to take a more active role in their care and the very first CareKit app being released today is for Parkinson’s. And it surfaces some of that valuable information we discussed so people can start understanding better what affects their health. And these six leading institutions will begin using this app with their Parkinson’s patients immediately so they can have a more informed discussion about individualized treatments.
Let me give you another example: surgery. One of the things physicians tell us is that one of the most important things affecting outcome of surgery is actually what you do during the recovery process. Yet we go from being monitored by a team of highly trained specialists using leading edge technology to being discharged with this: a single sheet of paper. This is actually what happens pretty much across the country. This is your list of things to do, things not to do, which day you’re supposed to do them on and adherence to this is notoriously very poor.
So using the CareKit modules we’ve been working with Texas Medical Center and they’ve created an app for the phone that guides you through this critical process in a completely different way. It’s got a care card which is your list of things to do every day and checklist form as you fill them out, the little heart fills up, it’s really nice. It’s got a symptom and measurement tracker where you can record information on your progress. It’s, you can record things like your temperature to monitor for an infection or you can use the accelerometer on the iPhone to study range of motion. And then you can share this information with your loved ones who can help support you through this recovery process. And best of all, you can share this information with your physician who will take the results of how you’re doing and they will dynamically update your care plan so it changes on the fly. Something just not possible with a sheet of paper.
Those are just two examples of CareKit apps, there are others coming. And we think the possibilities here are limitless.
Now, a word about privacy. Nothing is more sensitive than your health data. You decide which apps you use. And with whom you share this information. CareKit, like ResearchKit, will be open source and it will be available in April.
We have been absolutely humbled and inspired by the response to ResearchKit. And we can’t wait to see what great apps get created with CareKit. Thank you. Back to Tim.
Tim Cook – CEO, Apple Inc.
Thank you. It’s amazing that in such a short period of time that ResearchKit has had a profound impact on the broad area of medical research. And our hope is that CareKit can have the same kind of impact on helping individuals manage their care.
So you’ve seen the latest important work we have going on the environment and in the health area. Now I’d like to talk about products. And I’ll get started with the Apple Watch. Since we launched it, less than a year ago, the Apple Watch has become the top selling smart watch in the world. But most importantly to us, customers love it. They found that it’s not just useful but it’s become an essential part of their daily lives. They love being able to receive and respond to messages directly from their wrists as well as track their activity, manage their calendar, navigate with maps and get up to the minute information on sports scores and news headlines and more.