First LGBT study via Apple iPhone App

Apps. We use them to tell our friends (and complete strangers) about our life and lunch, we use it to stay up to date with news, see when there is going to be load shedding, look at the weather, we use them to say “aaaahw” to babies and cats; also cats with babies. App is life.

Now the folks at the University of California, San Francisco, decided to use iPhones (ResearchKit) to conduct the biggest study of LGBT health ever in the United States (and world). And they called it… wait for it: “The Pride Study” which stands for Population Research in Identity and Disparities for Equality.#NailedIt

According to the University of California website, the study is the first of this kind to better understand the health of LGBT adults in the United States. “It’s a long study that uses an iPhone App to connect with and track sexual and gender minority adults over time to understand factors related to health and disease in this population.” Kirsten Bibbins-Domingo, M.D., Ph.D., MAS, professor (damn girl!) of epidemiology and biostatistics said that the LGBT community has been understudied and under served in health care settings. According to the team, 600 participants pre-enrolled for the study before it even began. They hope to reach thousands more, so they can know more about this understudied topic. The App and website launched last week.

LGBT Study
The PrideStudy.org website.

According to the website they are excited to use this technology and share the study’s outcomes, but have no partnership, financial or data transfer arrangements with Apple. The App will survey LGBT men and women about health issues like smoking, HIV/AIDS, obesity, cancer and even mental illnesses. This news comes right after America announced that same sex marriages are legalised in the entire United States. Which is the perfect timing, don’t you think? According to the researchers at the university this group of people have unique health needs, but we don’t know what these needs are.

The researchers hope that most LGBT folks will register for the PRIDE Study using the App or via the internet on PrideStudy.org… You know, for people that have Android or Microsoft devices.

The researchers probably saw that when Stanford University released an App also via the iPhone to monitor heart activity, thousands of people signed up to participate. There is just something about sitting on your couch, procrastinating, and taking part in a study that really gives you a rush. I would know, as I took part in most studies about people who think they’re dying alone and have lots of cats.

The researchers (and I) are pretty psyched to see the end results of the LGBT study. It’s the first national one of its kind, so it’s pretty cool!

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