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Apple Wants Your iPhone to Become a Medical Records Device

Your medical data at the touch of a button?                  Josh Lowensohn  CNET

What Apple wants to do is make the iPhone the place for users to store all the medical data that a doctor could possibly need and to share that data with the doctor on command.

Apple is holding discussions with hospitals and healthcare industry professionals, and the team is eyeing possible acquisitions to more quickly ramp up the offering, the report says.

In the recent months, Apple has been in conversations with health IT industry groups that can help them achieve their goals. It has previously been reported that Apple is working on bringing glucose monitoring to Apple Watch, and watchOS 4 brings core Bluetooth support for continuous health and fitness monitoring of nearby devices.

However, aspects of HealthKit could be a precursor to this project, including the option to input your health records, although it is rather limited in relation to what Apple is apparently working towards.

Your medical data at the touch of a button? "Jonathan Bush calls rumor baseless" class="local_link" target="_blank">Apple is looking at startups in the cloud-hosting space to give it a foothold in healthcare. The point is to provide users with all of the related health data which can be easily accessible through the iPhone. The company has also hired some of the top developers involved with FHIR, an increasingly popular protocol for exchanging electronic health records, the report said.

Basically, this has much to do with what the provider did with music where it replaced CDs and scattered MP3s with a centralized management system in iPod and iTunes in the similarly complex and fragmented landscape for health data. Health experts call this an interoperability crisis. It has also made some notable hires from the medical sector of late, including a rising star of Stanford University's digital health efforts, Sumbul Desai, also reported by CNBC.

Apple declined to comment on CNBC's report, and its reps didn't respond to our requests for additional information. Some third-parties can sometimes see medical data from the NHS database, but that's usually reserved for special cases such as applying for Critical Illness insurance.