Cardiologists and researchers may soon have a new tool to help them remotely monitor the heart health of patients and study participants.
According to an article published by Bloomberg this week, Google is testing an investigational wristband device designed to take a patient’s electrocardiogram and measure environmental stressors like light and noise levels even when they are at home.
“Our intended use is for this to become a medical device that’s prescribed to patients or used for clinical trials,” says Andy Conrad, head of the life sciences team at Google.
The new device is expected to give researchers, doctors and even pharmaceutical companies the accurate, minute-by-minute data they have long desired to acquire from individuals outside of the laboratory or doctor’s office. While Google and other companies currently offer health tracking features on smart watches and other smart devices, these existing tools are not considered “rigorous enough” for research.
To create a medical-grade health tracker, Google took the project to Google X, its quasi-secret, high-tech facility responsible for innovations like Google contact lenses that measure glucose levels for diabetic patients. The technology giant will work in conjunction with academic researchers and pharmaceutical companies over the summer to test the accuracy of the new wearable device. Following these trials, it will seek regulatory clearance to use the tracker in both the United States and Europe.
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