Developers will be able to use HealthKit to read spirometer data

A handful of entrepreneurs have developed ways for smartphones to use data from spirometers to allow patients with respiratory problems, particularly for asthma, to track lung capacity and, in some cases, share that information with physicians. In what sounds like an intriguing development, Apple’s latest beta update of its iOS 8 platform for developers includes […]

A handful of entrepreneurs have developed ways for smartphones to use data from spirometers to allow patients with respiratory problems, particularly for asthma, to track lung capacity and, in some cases, share that information with physicians.

In what sounds like an intriguing development, Apple’s latest beta update of its iOS 8 platform for developers includes a new feature for the health data aggregation platform, HealthKit. It includes the ability to read data from a spirometer, according to a report by MacObserver.

The article cautions that just because Apple’s iOS 8 Beta 5 update includes a spirometer data type, it doesn’t mean it’s going to include a spirometer in an iOS device. “The inclusion of a data type simply means that HealthKit will know what to do with that data should be it be sent to an iOS device,” the post reads.

Exco InTouch is producing clinical trial tools using smartphones. Among the electronic data-capture tools it has developed to get data from home monitoring devices, is one for spirometers that can be integrated into an eDiary with Bluetooth.

Cohero Health, part of the StartUp Health Academy, developed an inhaler strap and mobile spirometer for children with asthma, called AsthmaHero.
It transmits real-time data to smartphones with the goal of tracking and improving children’s use of their inhalers.

Resp.io, a Greece-based company, also took on asthma with its spirometer smartphone attachment. The device it is developing uses GPS to ascertain areas that are dangerous to an asthmatic patient’s respiratory capabilities and it assesses lung capacity with the goal of preventing or reducing asthma attacks. The company took part in the DreamIt Health Baltimore program earlier this year.

Of course, Apple has also been working with companies to integrate medical device tracking data onto its iOS platform since 2009, so this is just the next logical step. MobiHealthNews provided a cool timeline highlighting some of those developments in June.