Although Apple Health will be receiving some love in the future, it seems that Stephen Friend, a senior figure in health care who joined Apple in 2016, has already left the tech company.
Stephen Friend was initially recruited by Apple to help collaborate on “health-related projects.” The news caused ripples in the health industry due to his highly reputable status, and many in both the tech and health industry wondered what would come out of the collaboration.
Jeff Williams, who’s the COO of Apple, is passionate about merging technology with health care. Not too recently he said that he dreams of a future where “consumers [are] owning their health data.” Stephen Friend has similar goals, as his work revolves around rethinking health care research, in addition to creating open incentives and standards that greater benefit patients. He co-founded the non-profit Sage Bionetworks back in 2009. But now that Friend is no longer a part of the Apple’s health team, perhaps the partnership simply wasn’t working in a productive way.
Friend hasn’t been the only one to leave Apple’s health team in recent months. Anil Sethi, who used to be Apple’s health boss, left the company back in December. Sethi decided to focus on a completely new venture: a start-up helping cancer patients to aggregate their medical information. The decision to change direction was inspired by Sethi’s sister, Tania, who unfortunately passed away from cancer back in September. Anil Sethi was named the director of the health team in August 2016 and worked at Apple as an engineer back in the late 1980s.
Stephen Friend’s LinkedIn page has now been updated, and the update shows that his tenure at Apple actually finished in November of 2017, although the news about his leaving has only just come out. According to his profile, he is now an “independent entrepreneur.”