Posted by:Shyam Deval May 7th, 2015

Medical testing and experimenting for a long time have been a critical part of research process to develop new medicines and treatments.These studies are designed to establish the efficacy of the treatments with a broader goal of improving health and quality of life for patients.

So naturally it’s no surprise that they involve people – ideally lots of people who meet the specific criteria’s that the study requires.The more people participate, the more data is collected. A robust amount of data has always been desired by researchers but the advent of ‘Big Data‘ technologies now provide even greater ability to use these large datasets in an efficient manner.

But it’s always been challenging for researchers to find participants for the studies – due to logistical and resource constraints.Enter Apple’s ResearchKit.

With ResearchKit, Apple is once again attempting to fundamentally (and hopefully positively) impact a process and disrupt an industry that is traditionally very change averse.Only time will tell how much success Apple will have but it has very smartly coopted many of the leading medical institutions and foundations from around the world in the development and rollout of the ResearchKit.

So what is ResearchKit anyways?

It is an open source software framework that will allow developers to create iOS apps that can be used to collect data for medical research.This promises to bring the mobile ‘any time any where’ ability to collection of data.If research participant can use their phones to fill out forms and complete activities for which they would typically have to travel to a ‘site’ (an industry term for a hospital), they are more likely to participate in the study and provide timely accurate data.

Not only that, the research app can also access data generated by sensors such as accelerometer and barometer as well as data generated by another of Apple’s recent framework – HealthKit.This collaboration between the two frameworks enables medical researchers access to data such as calorie use and heart rates.

We here at BTC are building test apps with ResearchKit so we can help our client companies when they are ready to adopt the framework as part of their research process.In a blog post next week,I will get into more technical and functional details about the ResearchKit framework.I would love to hear your thoughts on promises and challenges of this latest offering from Apple.

Learn more about ResearchKit. Click the below image to watch our hugely successful webinar –

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