Apple announces framework to build personal health apps called CareKit, release in April

While ResearchKit is for collecting medical data for studies, CareKit's focus is on patients, who can share info with physicians.

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CNET/CBS Interactive

Apple has launched CareKit, a framework to build apps for personal health.

While ResearchKit focuses on collecting medical data for patients, CareKit focuses on patients' health. The first app, which is available at six major medical centers around the US, is for Parkinson's.

The Parkinson's app features a care card, symptom tracker, and range of motion tests with accelerometers.

"We think the possibilities here are limitless," Jeff Williams, chief operating office at Apple, said.

Commenting on privacy, Apple says you decide who you share the info with.

CaerKit will be open source and available in April. Apple says more CareKit apps are coming.

Williams also discussed the progress of ResearchKit, like finding sub types of the two major types of diabetes, identifying asthma triggers across 50 states, and mentioned studies from leading institutions.

During the event, Apple showed a touching video of ResearchKit's affect on specific patients, like research to find a predictor for epilepsy thanks to sensors in the Apple Watch and studies to track Parkinson's patients.

Apple unveiled ResearchKit during its Apple Watch event in March 2015. The software was designed to help medical professionals build apps and collect data about patients in an easy, consistent manner.

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