Abstract 20560: Early National Dissemination and Adoption of the Sixth Vital Sign: A Mobile App For Population Health Surveillance
Background: National telephone surveys are a resource-intensive approach to monitor population health. Smartphone applications (apps) are a novel technique to directly reach people for research and engage them in health promotion. We sought to examine early adoption of a self-guided smartphone-based research app that assesses both objective and self-reported measures of health.
Methods: The 6th Vital Sign is an iPhone app designed using Apple’s Researchkit to enroll and consent adults in a study that measures normal walking speed over 2 minutes (using the phone’s accelerometer), self-reported health (14 questions) and demographics (6 questions). On April 11, 2016 the study app was uploaded into the iTunes store (no announcement) and formally launched 25 days later with a five-day print, web and social media blitz. Data from the iTunes store and study were examined to describe timing of enrollment, participant characteristics, geographic distribution, and drivers of participation in the study’s first 50 days.
Results: The 6th Vital Sign research study was viewed in iTunes by 1,111 people in the study’s first 50 days, 29.6% pre-launch and 70.4% post. There were 771 app downloads (22.6% pre-launch, 77.4% post). Of these, 398 adults consented to participate (51.6% of downloads), 90.7% completed the walk test and 63.1% completed the health assessment. Median age of participants was 54 (interquartile range 37-64) years, 58% were female, 89.2% White, 6.5% had 12 or fewer years of education, 76.1% were living with a chronic health condition (predominantly high cholesterol, hypertension, or joint pain). Participants spanned 27 states with 64.8% within a 100 mile radius of the study coordinating center. Only 7.2% reported to learn of the study from the app store compared with 23.4% who were referred by someone and 22.5% who saw a social media announcement. Three quarters of consented adults (N=312) agreed to be contacted for future research studies.
Conclusions: This early phase of the 6th Vital Sign study demonstrates the feasibility of designing and disseminating a smartphone-based app to assess population health. Continued scaling of this app will employ targeted recruitment efforts to reach adequate sample diversity and size for establishing population norms.
Author Disclosures: J. Prvu Bettger: None. R. Shaw: None. J. Kelly: None. M.C. Morey: None. K. Schwartz: None. C. Liu: None. K. Hawkins: None. E.D. Peterson: None.
- © 2016 by American Heart Association, Inc.