UK firm Cambridge Healthcare has launched a health-focused app store which it claims is the first such service in Europe. The store is integrated within the firm’s existing personal health record (PHR) service called 'How are you?' and carries the same name.

Among the apps offered in the new store are ones covering weight management, asthma and other allergies as well as blood pressure monitoring. The store is part of Cambridge Healthcare’s wider PHR service which enables patients to upload their personal medical history to an online portal. This information is then shared with their doctors and carers. The app store is a means to personalise the How are you? service. It is free to NHS patients and staff.

From Cambridge Healthcare’s announcement, it appears the app store is designed for both health professionals to prescribe suitable apps to patients, as well as for patients themselves.

US app store Happtique has been offering a similar service for some time. In a bid to offer guidance to health professionals and consumers, it  recently announced an app-certification programme designed to offer reassurance across a range of critiera including operability, privacy and security .

Cambridge Healthcare also has international ambitions outside the UK. It has an office in Beijing and a deal with Chinese website Sina. As part of the agreement. Cambridge Healthcare enables doctors who are registered on Sina’s Weibo platform to provide online consultation services to patients.