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Your Fitbit Data Means New Ethics Conundrums for Clinical Trials (1)

Aug. 30, 2019, 9:26 AMUpdated: Aug. 30, 2019, 2:57 PM

That Apple Watch user agreement you clicked but probably didn’t read says a lot about how researchers can use your data—provided clinical trial ethics boards can reconcile that language with federal protections for study volunteers.

Those conflicting requirements could stifle growing efforts to use the reams of data collected through Fitbits, Apple Watches, and apps in efforts to develop new medical treatments. The mobile technologies make clinical trials more accessible, allowing underrepresented groups to participate in studies. The devices also better gauge a treatment’s effectiveness in participants’ daily lives by continuously collecting data rather than relying on periodic check-ins in...

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