RANKED Health program to help patients, docs find clinically relevant apps

A new program, RANKED Health, aims to help clinicians and patients sort through the deluge of health-related apps and devices.

Rankings from the MIT Hacking Medicine Institute program are a means to cut through the noise and provide critical evaluation of apps and devices to highlights ones that are clinically relevant, effective and secure, according to Medtech Boston

"There isn't a trusted, credible source that you can go to if you're a physician or a patient to figure out which of these 150,000 apps are worth using," RANKED Health co-leader Maulik Majmudar, M.D., associate director of the Healthcare Transformation Lab at Massachusetts General Hospital, says in the article.

That vaccuum of information was an issue for caregivers in an AARP study on their use of digital health tools.

RANKED Health is using an academic journal model for the task: two volunteer experts review the app independently and a third editor synthesizes the information from the two reviews. Reviewers are heavily focused on clinical relevance and utility, but will also consider other factors such as functionality, usability and security.

So far, it's evaluating apps in for chronic diseases, such as diabetes and cardiovascular disease, as well as popular apps that track symptoms, reproductive health and medication adherence.

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