Innovation That Matters

Health tracker users can donate their data to research in return for future revenue

Sport & Fitness

MyHealthPal is a health tracker which aims to help Parkinsons sufferers manage their condition and donate their data to researchers.

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Platforms such as Cue, which enable patients to keep an eye on their health on a daily basis, inevitably create potentially useful data. In the past, we have seen this data utilized by companies such as to improve mental health treatment, but now a new platform called MyHealthPal puts the data’s value back in the hands of the patient. The iOS app enables users to donate the data collected — through interacting with the platform — to relevant charities and scientific research institutions and receive a share of the revenue generated by it.

MyHealthPal is an analytics platform which aims to help sufferers better manage living with Parkinsons. The free app enables users to input details about their day-to-day behaviour, moods and symptoms, and transforms the information into visualized data which can give the user a better understanding of their current condition. These visualizations can then be shared with friends, family and doctors — as well as with researchers. The app helps patients keep on top of complicated medication schedules through reminders and there are simple game-like tests which can monitor the patient’s functioning capacities.

Users can also choose to participate in the company’s data donation program, in which their anonymized data will be sold to research organizations. In return, the patient will receive a share of the profits that myHealthPal receives from selling that data.


MyHealthPal was created by tech entrepreneur and Parkinson sufferer Mike Barlow, with the needs and rights of patients, like himself, at the forefront. The analytics platform is currently focused on Parkinson sufferers but could be used to help monitor other long-term conditions in the future. Perhaps other platforms could acknowledge the contribution of the patients themselves to the big data being collected around the world by offering rewards for their donation?



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