Apple Pushing HealthKit as the Standard at Major Medical Centers

| News

Apple wants HealthKit to be more than another gimmick, so the company has been been meeting with major clinics and health centers to push for widespread adoption once the feature is available this fall. What Apple really wants is for HealthKit to become the standard for health and fitness data collection and sharing for every clinic and medical center.

Apple wants HealthKit to be the standard for health and fitness dataMount Sinai, Johns Hopkins, and the Cleveland Clinic have all been in talks with Apple, according to Reuters. Health record management service Allscripts has also been courted by Apple, showing the company is looking to ensure HealthKit has the necessary support to make sure data our iPhones collect can be easily shared with our doctors.

HealthKit is a health and fitness tracking platform Apple developed as part of iOS 8 that lets iPhone users collect, view, and share data with their doctors. Instead of working like another fitness tracking device, HealthKit creates a standard third-party device makers can adopt for sharing information with our iPhones. Once the data has been collected, it will be viewable in other apps, and can be shared with medical centers, too.

HealthKit will no doubt tie in with Apple's own wearable tech efforts including the rumored iWatch, but will reach beyond that, too. Specialized health tracking devices can tie into HealthKit and automatically transmit the data they collect to your doctor, and if your doctor sees any problems the system supports pushing messages back out to end users, too.

The Mayo Clinic is already working with Apple on HealthKit support, and we'll likely see more medical centers on board when iOS 8 ships this fall. Kaiser Permanente is reportedly already working on HealthKit support, and the MyChart personal health record system is on board, too.

For doctors and medical centers, adopting HealthKit means they have a single system to support instead of dealing with multiple incompatible data tracking services. That translates into lower overall costs and potentially fewer medical record errors.

For Apple, it moves the company into a new market that covers both personal and professional use. Apple already changed the music market and smartphone markets. Now it looks like the company is ready to change the medical market, too.

The Mac Observer Spin The Mac Observer Spin is how we show you what our authors think about a news story at quick glance. Read More →

Apple may want to own the health and fitness market, but Google and Samsung do, too. Expect to see a big fight between the three for control over the data our bodies create.

Popular TMO Stories



For all those who want to dismiss the iOS ecosystem as just being for consumption, pay attention to HealthKit.  This is a truly concerted effort by Apple to move iOS beyond content consumption and even beyond content creation.  iOS is poised to become the first mainstream health tracking device that reaches any kind of critical mass, simple enough that your grandmother could use it.  This is technology that can truly improve lives, something sorely missing from our ever growing dependence on technology, and that’s a good thing.



I say, again, that this is huge. Buy-in from leading academic medical institutions is vital for adoption as a standard, itself product differentiator between professional grade and everything else.

This new class of not simply devices but services baked into the OS is opening what may come to be regarded as the second epoch of this post PC era. The first was about connectivity between people and devices and tracking of things important to the end user.

This second will be about monitoring and protecting personal well-being and preserving life itself.

Once the lay public see the benefits of this latter tranche of products (e.g. the rumoured iWatch) and services (e.g. HealthKit), as modelled by the early adopters, most will see the benefits and will want it.

I believe that this will not be unlike the rollout of the smartphone itself, at the dawn of which pundits and experts predicted the devices would remain a niche product enjoyed by a geekier and/or wealthier minority of mobile phone users, only to rapidly alter their predictions once the sales trajectories were unambiguously favouring the smartphone.


I have been very critical of the health and fitness monitoring push Apple has been on. I just never saw it as something that would be a big draw in consumer space. For that matter I still don’t. However if they get some big players, hospitals, institutions, and corporations on board that would go a long way to making it a de facto industrial standard. That would be a game changer. It also would go a long way to changing the perception of iOS as a consumer and consumption platform into a professional and content creation platform. This ties in nicely with the Productivity
Ad campaign they started yesterday.

iOS could become the Windows Professional of the next decade.


As a designer and project manager for hundreds of thousands of square feet pf labs, clinics, clean rooms, surgical suites, etc., and FWIW, I can tell you scientists, doctors and health professionals in general love their Macs. This looks like a slam-dunk to me.

Log in to comment (TMO, Twitter or Facebook) or Register for a TMO account