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'Alert' app taps Apple HealthKit to keep diabetics in safe glucose level zone

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A new app, dubbed Alert, notifies users about potentially risky glucose levels via real-time data, courtesy of the Apple HealthKit platform.

The goal is to alert chronically ill patients and their caregivers to share glucose status, according to creator HelpAround, which is also the developer of Diabetes Helpers, a peer-to-peer support system. The software also lets users dealing with an emotional or physical distress scenario manually reach out and conference with friends, family and healthcare providers.

"With Diabetes Helpers, we saw thousands of strangers stepping up to help each other, but we also learned how much fear our users cope with," Yishai Knobel, HelpAround founder and CEO, said in an announcement. "We recognized that in times of trouble it is imperative for anyone to be able to easily reach the most trusted people in their lives."

The new app is one of the first HealthKit-related software developments since Apple debuted its healthcare platform in June 2014. More than a dozen leading U.S. hospitals have piloted the HealthKit system to track patient care and save on operating costs.

Knobel said the company focused Alert on diabetes after considering a range of chronic conditions and allergies.

Once a user launches Alert they then create an alert either by shaking the phone or tapping a single large red alert button. There is a five second buffer and then the app sends a text with the user's exact location to a maximum of three contacts and triggers a conference call with the patients and their support team.

The basic Alert app is available for free on iOS and Android and includes the text service and three conference calls. The company expects to release an Apple Watch version of the app later this year.

For more information:
- read the announcement

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