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Apple launches new Research app, trio of health studies

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Apple is launching three health studies in the Apple Research app, with the trio of projects aiming to help further medical research into hearing, reproductive health, and overall health, by taking advantage of the functions of the Apple Watch.

The work performed with Apple Research in a study of heart health led to the creation of new features for the Apple Watch, to detect heart issues before they become a major problem. The notifications of unusual heart rates has helped save many lives already, but evidently Apple believes it could do more.

"With the Apple Heart Study, we found that we could positively impact medical research in ways that help patients today and that make contributions that will benefit future generations," said Jeff Williams, Apple's chief operating officer. "Today's announcement carries our commitment to health even further by engaging with participants on a larger scale than ever before."

At its September event, Apple introduced three more projects it will be offering in the United States via the Apple Research app. The studies will use a variety of features built into the Apple Watch already, including some features arriving as part of watchOS 6.

The Apple Hearing Study, in partnership with the World Health Organization and the University of Michigan, will monitor the ambient sound of the user via the Apple Watch, to determine the average level of noise they are subjected to throughout the day. The Apple Women's Health Study, partnered with NIH and Harvard, will look into the menstrual cycle, while the Apple Heart & Movement Study with the American Heart Association and Brigham and Women's Hospital will examine activity and movement.

"At the American Heart Association, we are a relentless force for a world of longer, healthier lives, and we are committed to educating and empowering people to be proactive in all areas of their heart health and general well-being," said Nancy Brown, CEO of the American Heart Association. "We believe that emerging technology solutions that seek to provide deeper health insights offer great potential in getting us there. We are collaborating with Apple and Brigham and Women's Hospital on the Apple Heart and Movement Study to explore the correlation between a broad range of physical activities and a person's overall heart health to ultimately understand risks and interventions to improve health."

Users can elect to take part in the projects through the Research app later this year in the United States.