Partners HealthCare announces new platform to help companies survey patients


The Center for Connected Health at Partners HealthCare has created a secure survey tool to help medical product makers and investors get feedback from patients and customers. The new mobile app and Web-based survey tool called cHealth Compass will charge companies for the service and pay survey takers for their time.

The app's home page. (Image via Partners)

The cHealth Compass homepage. (Image via Partners)

“It’s typically difficult to get patients involved in medical product development and design,” said Kamal Jethwani, corporate manager for research and innovation at the center.

Device developers must jump through a series of regulatory hoops and get permission from doctors before contacting patients. And because medical patient data must be stored and secured in a HIPAA-compliant manner, free tools like Google Forms or SurveyMonkey are off limits.

To get around these barriers, cHealth Compass has created a secure interface that patients can interact with, via apps and online. The platform’s other big strength is a growing database of patients representing a variety of demographics and age groups, who’ve given companies permission to get in touch.

New enrollees get a flat $50 when they register and $110 per year to take monthly surveys. Other opportunities from individual vendors could pull in between $20 to $50 per survey.

“We currently have several hundred people, and are actively enrolling more,” said Jethwani. The goal is to enroll 2,000 patients from Massachusetts by summer 2015, and then expand to include residents from other parts of the United States.

Client companies will pay a fee for the service, depending on how many questions are included in their surveys and how many patients they intend to reach.

Photo via Phil Campbell on Flickr