IBM Launches Watson Health Cloud, Partners With Apple to Support HealthKit and ResearchKit Apps

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Apr 12, 2001
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Apple partner IBM today announced the launch of Watson Health Cloud, designed to offer physicians, researchers, insurers and health-related companies a secure and open platform for storing health-related data. The platform facilitates the secure sharing of data from multiple types of input, from personal fitness trackers to connected medical devices to doctor-created medical records.

The future of health is all about the individual. With the increasing prevalence of personal fitness trackers, connected medical devices, implantables and other sensors that collect real-time information, the average person is likely to generate more than one million gigabytes of health-related data in their lifetime (the equivalent of more than 300 million books).

However, it is difficult to connect these dynamic and constantly growing pools of information with more traditional sources such as doctor-created medical records, clinical research and individual genomes --- data sets that are fragmented and not easily shared. A highly scalable and secure global information platform is essential to pull out individualized insights to help people and providers make timely, evidence-based decisions about health-related issues.
IBM is expanding its partnership with Apple with IBM Watson Health Cloud to offer a secure cloud platform and analytics services for HealthKit and ResearchKit apps. It will store data entered by customers into iOS apps and give medical researchers a data storage solution that also includes "sophisticated data analytics capabilities."
IBM and Apple will expand their ground-breaking partnership to apply cloud services and analytics to HealthKit and ResearchKit, and iOS devices. IBM will provide a secure research capability on the Watson Health Cloud platform, anonymizing personal data to allow researchers to easily store, aggregate and model information collected from iOS users who opt-in contribute personal data to medical research.
IBM and Apple first partnered up last summer to boost both companies' enterprise sales. Under the partnership, IBM is selling iOS devices to corporate customers and creating a wide range of enterprise-focused apps tailored to industries like retail, healthcare, banking, travel, transportation, and more.

Article Link: IBM Launches Watson Health Cloud, Partners With Apple to Support HealthKit and ResearchKit Apps
 

im_to_hyper

macrumors 65816
Aug 25, 2004
1,097
206
Pasadena, California, USA
Hopefully as we approach a future where the FDA will be regulating the Apple Watch, where real-time data can be saved to the cloud and shared with your doctor as it happens, and where everyone is joining in on the world's largest health study, this program will provide *secure* access to all that medical data.
 

verniesgarden

macrumors 65816
May 29, 2007
1,079
568
Portland, Or
So when the machines become self aware they know exactly what our weaknesses are...


On a serious note. IBM should help apple fix Siri. Even if just for being able to say "hello, Watson..." Instead of "hey, Siri..."
 

aacealo

macrumors member
Oct 15, 2012
30
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Does anybody know how to opt in? I can't find anything expressly called "IBM Watson"...

Also, why on earth does MacRumors not use Apple Keychain? Just an observation...
 

2457282

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Dec 6, 2012
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As someone who works in healthcare analytics, all this attention recently around big data and analytics is exciting. More funding could certainly help to bring fresh eyes to health issues that could potentially have a positive impact on lives.

Having said that a word of caution - Analytics in this space is a funny thing. Recently one of the big insurance companies put out a national analytics report showing the cost of certain procedures across the country and how it varried by thousands of dollars from state to state. This could motivate medical tourism within country as folks looking to save money go to where the costs are the less expensive than where they are. However, this analysis did not include important factor, such as outcomes and malpractice rate. In other words, cheap is not the only factor and arguably not even the most important factor in a procedure. Sure we want to get things done at the lowest cost possible, but we should always make sure that we are getting things done at a quality facility that has a high success rate, low malpractice rate and low complication rate. That may drive the cost up a little, but when dealing with my life at least, I would be okay with a higher cost if it meant a better outcome for me.

Drugs are the same issue. We have read all to often about drugs that end up being pulled due to complications and side affects. Assuming it was not intentional on the part of the drug companie, it is clear that the testing and analytics is not finding the issues.

So, I hope this goes well for the new organization and they are able to bring a gravitas to healthcare and truly find a way to influence lives for the better.
 

atrevers

macrumors regular
May 24, 2007
128
27
UK
Sure we want to get things done at the lowest cost possible, but we should always make sure that we are getting things done at a quality facility that has a high success rate, low malpractice rate and low complication rate. That may drive the cost up a little, but when dealing with my life at least, I would be okay with a higher cost if it meant a better outcome for me.
Not to criticise the poster, but for me this statement encapsulates the reason that healthcare shouldn't be subject to capitalist market forces. Whilst one person can afford the higher quality service and will therefore pay, another person may not, thus creating a two-tier health system where the less privileged expect a lower level of service. Is it right that the less privileged in society should be given a lower chance of a positive outcome of healthcare based on the fact that they're less wealthy than others? Absolutely not.
 

2457282

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Dec 6, 2012
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Not to criticise the poster, but for me this statement encapsulates the reason that healthcare shouldn't be subject to capitalist market forces. Whilst one person can afford the higher quality service and will therefore pay, another person may not, thus creating a two-tier health system where the less privileged expect a lower level of service. Is it right that the less privileged in society should be given a lower chance of a positive outcome of healthcare based on the fact that they're less wealthy than others? Absolutely not.
I totally agree. Therefore let me clarify my position. Healthcare insurance provided through an employer addresses most of the cost issue for what you refer to as privileged tier. And with the Obamacare we are getting closer to providing insurance to what you refer to as the lower tier. Clearly this is not perfect and still needs work. However, my point is that we also need to reward the better doctors based on outcomes. If all doctors are paid equally regardless of their competence or outcomes, then we are not encouraging the right behaviors from the doctors.

Clearly this means that the better doctors are going to get higher payments for services rendered. The question is how can the insurance industry address this -- right now they encourage us to go to the cheapest doctor and many refuse to pay if you go "out of network" or pay very little. This indeed creates the two tier system where those that can afford it will go out of network and receive better care. Nothing I have seen even begins to address this.

In my opinion, better doctors should receive better compensation. This would encourage other doctors to get better. (problem one is defining and measuring "better"). We also need an insurance system that recognizes that paying a little more for better doctor can reduce the long term cost in medical care. Sure, there will always be doctors that are too expensive that the system will not pay for, so there will always be a two tier system. My point is that if it is done right, the upper tier will be very small, which it is not today.
 

ewkid

macrumors member
Apr 3, 2011
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I'm not sure why Apple thinks IBM is a good partner. IBM seems to screw up a lot of things and spends a lot of time in court defending themselves from its customers.
 

macduke

macrumors G4
Jun 27, 2007
10,616
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Central U.S.
This whole IBM thing makes me feel weird, but when it comes to health, this could potentially revolutionize medical studies and help rapidly advance medical science. Since IBM partners with Apple on making those enterprise apps, it makes sense that they would also use them to interface with hospitals and more.