Apple has made it easier than ever to take part in a large-scale health study and provide researchers with valuable health data by using the Apple Research app. For most studies, all you need is a phone and a few spare minutes to answer survey questions.
Your input could very well help advance medical science in your spare time. What’s not to like? Here’s how to use the Apple Research app and participate in health studies.
How to Use the Apple Research App
The Apple Research app is free to download from the App Store. To get started, download the Apple Research app and select a study that applies to you. Check the demographics requirements before signing up. For some studies, you may need access to extra devices such as an Apple Watch.
By joining a study, you will likely need to share data with the researchers. Each study collects data in unique ways. For instance, you may complete regular surveys related to the studied health condition. Often, you will submit health data from your phone or Apple Watch. The app requires permission to access this information.
To sign up for a study, first complete a research profile. Once this is set up, you can learn more detailed information about the study in general. After signing a few forms, the app will request permission to access health data on your phone. You may not be able to take part in the study without granting access to this information.
After this step, you can start participating. To begin, answer demographic questions and respond to quick surveys as requested. You may also report data about other device usage. The Apple Hearing Study, for instance, can track headphone, car stereo, and other device use.
Plus, a whole variety of health topics are already getting attention. At the time of writing, the Apple Hearing Study examines how your hearing may be impacted by sound levels over time; the iPhone and Apple Watch already have hearing health tools, in case you want a reminder to keep the volume reasonable. This study is conducted with collaboration from the University of Michigan and the World Health Organization.
In addition, the Apple Heart & Movement Study examines the link between physical activity and heart health. Record workouts on your Apple Watch to provide info for this research. This study is conducted in connection with the American Heart Association and the Brigham and Women’s Hospital.
What Should You Expect From Apple Research?
Before enrolling, be aware of the potential time commitment. Some studies last a limited amount of time, whereas others have an indefinite end date. The Apple Women’s Health Study, for instance, “may last for decades,” according to the app’s description.
The work required from you along the way is minimal, for the most part. Answering the surveys and completing other tasks for each study tends to take a few minutes at most.
How to Leave an Apple Research Study
Participation in the studies is voluntary, and you can stop contributing at any time. To opt out, go to your enrolled studies page and select the one you wish to leave. Scroll to the bottom of the page and select the Withdraw from this study link at the bottom.
After confirming your withdrawal from the study, your information is no longer shared.
Is Your Data Private and Safe on Apple Research?
The exact data collected by Apple Research App depends on the particular study you join. Sharing health data with researchers requires your express consent.
Remember that the Apple Research App operates on a voluntary basis. If you are uncomfortable sharing health data with the app, then choose not to take part in any studies. Because most iPhone users opt out of app tracking, it’s clear not everyone wants to share this data. Keeping your health info private is definitely understandable.
For those who do decide to take part in a study, Apple offers many privacy measures for the Apple Research App. Your data is not sold. Any data shared with Apple is stored securely, and the company does not have the ability to access any identifying information. Plus, setting a passcode on your device helps encrypt your information. For next-level security, change your iPhone passcode from time to time the same way you update any password.
Also note that sharing health info is not limited to this app alone. The health sharing option on an iPhone allows you to share data from the Health app with anyone. Providing access to family members or healthcare professionals can help improve medical care for individuals. This innovation is part of the Health app’s iOS 15 update.
What Are the Benefits of Apple Research?
Why would you want to use the Apple Research App? Given the millions of iPhone users in the world, access to health data on this scale is unheard of. Volunteering to take part in a medical health study has never been easier. In essence, you can help contribute to medical knowledge in your spare time.
Sharing your data may help advance the understanding of certain health conditions. Although participants do not get paid, joining studies may help others in the future. For example, over 400,000 Apple Watch users provided data for the completed Apple Heart Study. Their data helped prove that wearable devices can detect atrial fibrillation.
A heartbeat irregularity is a leading cause of stroke. Unfortunately, it often goes undiagnosed. As results from the study show, the watch’s heart-rate pulse sensor can reveal this issue. Findings were also publicized by the Stanford University School of Medicine.
Because any iPhone user can join, virtual medical studies offer unprecedented data. The scope and scale of information could be difficult to get otherwise. Researchers may improve the health and wellbeing of countless people with this information. It’s exciting to consider how this volume of data will improve future healthcare.
Help Medical Research the Easy Way
If you want to provide info for medical research, then the Apple Research App is likely the easiest way to do so. You might help advance crucial studies with only a few minutes of your time. Download the Apple Research App and join medical research participants the world over.
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