Self-Help with Medical Apps for the iPhone
You’ve probably visited WebMD to answer your health questions. And the iTunes App Store already offers over 200 medicine-related apps, like information on drugs and heart-rate monitoring devices. But two new devices for the new iPhone OS demonstrate just how the iPhone is going to make monitoring your health both more immediate and interactive. One app can control a blood-pressure cuff that plugs in to your iPhone, and Johnson & Johnson revealed a similar app and device that tests blood glucose levels.
PCMag explains the far-reaching implications:
Since an iPhone is always connected via the integrated 3G modem, it could potentially send that data to your doctor for real-time monitoring of your condition. This will become possible with OS 3.0, which will finally enable the iPhone to talk to third-party peripherals… Other digital monitoring systems download data to a PC before sending it to the doctor for review. This app breaks new ground, allowing testing in real time and letting doctors adjust medication needs far more proactively.
Users could also connect to a community of people with the same conditions, comparing treatments and sharing advice. As revolutionary as these developments are, though, they do raise privacy concerns; controlling where your data ends up and limiting its access to outside parties may prove challenging, to say the least.