BBK Worldwide Survey Reveals Health App Usage and Implications for the Clinical Trials Industry

Boston, October 30, 2019 — A new survey from BBK Worldwide (BBK), the patient experience, recruitment, and engagement leader, reveals insight into health app use. The findings dispel some common myths and provide valuable data that members of the clinical research community can leverage to enhance the design, development, and adoption of clinical trial engagement apps. The Study Voices, Volume 3 survey is part of an ongoing series of surveys of patients, physicians, and clinical trial sponsors designed to shed light on key clinical research trends. The patient portion was conducted as part of BBK’s partnership with Health Union, a pioneer in online communities for people with chronic health conditions.

Of the 284 patients surveyed, 56% indicated they use health management apps, while 44% indicated they did not. Of those who use apps to manage their health, 35% use general health apps (e.g., Apple Health, Google Fit, Samsung Health), 21% use medication management apps, 16% use personal diary or journal apps, and 28% use other (e.g., fitness trackers, nutrition and diet, etc.). “For the patients using apps to manage their health, they are power users, engaged by dynamic and personalized content,” says Aaron Fleishman, Director, Market Development, BBK Worldwide.

The majority of patients (62%) who indicated they did not use health management apps indicated that they never thought of using an app to help manage their health. The findings reveal an opportunity to increase the number of people benefiting from health engagement apps through enhanced awareness and education.

When asked to agree or disagree, 71% of patients agreed that apps help keep them focused on managing their health, 49% agreed that apps help them follow their doctor’s instructions, and 49% agreed that apps help them follow their treatment plan. “A high percentage of patients appear to be primed to embrace clinical trial engagement apps as they are already using general apps to manage their health in a way that is similar to what is required of clinical trial participants,” says Fleishman.

Findings also revealed insight into what keeps patients interested in using health management apps. When given the option to choose multiple responses, 68% indicated that the content is updated regularly, 65% indicated the content is relevant and personalized, 59% indicated the app is visually appealing, and 41% indicated the app provides important health reminders. “Despite all the excitement around new technologies – and the convenience they offer – we have found that, for people living with chronic health conditions, the true driver of health-related digital activities is relevant, meaningful content. For an app or platform to be truly beneficial, it needs to present content in a way that helps people to find the information, support, or connection they seek,” says Olivier Chateau, Co-Founder and CEO, Health Union.

The Study Voices, Volume 3 survey includes responses from 284 patients and was conducted during October 2019. Comprehensive survey findings are available from BBK Worldwide.

About Health Union (

Health Union encourages social interactions that evolve into valuable online health conversations, helping people with chronic conditions find the information, connection, and validation they seek. The company creates condition-specific online communities – publishing original, daily content and continuously cultivating social conversation – to support, educate, and connect millions of people with challenging, chronic health concerns. Today, the Health Union family of brands includes 24 online health communities, including,,, and

About BBK Worldwide (

BBK Worldwide is committed to enhancing the clinical trial patient experience through a combination of services and technology-driven solutions that educate consumers, engage participants, unburden sites, and support sponsors. One of the few remaining corporately independent and full-service R&D marketing firms, BBK has maintained its position at the forefront of patient recruitment and engagement innovation for more than 35 years. An industry game changer, BBK’s patented smart technology TrialCentralNet® drives the company’s innovation while enhancing the patient journey and supporting the study community. Headquartered near Boston, Massachusetts, BBK has partners and offices across Europe and the Asia-Pacific region.