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Boston Children's Hospital launches public fever study based on Apple's ResearchKit

Boston Children's Hospital on Tuesday announced the launch of a new iPhone app and study project, Feverprints, based on Apple's open-source ResearchKit platform.

Unlike some ResearchKit studies, Feverprints is intended for the general public in order to crowdsource data. The iPhone app ask users to regularly record their temperatures, and answer questions about symptoms, medications, and other health-related topics. To improve privacy, data is being anonymized, and while both adults and children can enroll, children must have parental consent.

The ultimate goal is to narrow down the span of normal and febrile body temperatures, and deduce "feverprints" that may help diagnose infections and other diseases. The study is also concerned with finding out how well fever-reduction medications actually work.

Apple originally launched ResearchKit in March 2015, and since then the platform has found its way into a number of iOS and Apple Watch apps. Most recently Harvard University began using an app to track long-term damage to former NFL players.

Last week Apple debuted another medical platform, CareKit, geared toward patients exiting clinics and hospitals. That technology is slated to become available next month.