Today, the Pac-12 Conference announced a research collaboration with Fitbit and Stanford University School of Medicine researchers to investigate further whether wearable devices can be used to help detect, track & contain infectious diseases such as COVID-19.
This program is part of Fitbit’s ongoing research efforts related to early illness detection.
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By contributing valuable weekly COVID-19 testing data from student-athletes to correlate with wearable data from Fitbit devices, Fitbit researchers will be able to monitor better and control the spread of illness.
That’s critical as research continues to explore the possibility of COVID-19 transmission after vaccination and the impact of emerging variants.
The study, expected to run through 2021, recruits 1,000 student-athletes from participating Pac-12 Conference spring athletic programs and other sports practicing for their upcoming seasons.
The project will focus on students participating in sports such as basketball, football, soccer, and volleyball who receive frequent COVID-19 testing as part of their athletic program.
Stanford Medicine researchers will compare wearable health data from Fitbit SenseTM smartwatches against results from COVID-19 testing and weekly surveys about potential exposure and symptoms to help provide insights into the active student population.
“The Pac-12’s number one priority is the health, safety, and well-being of our student-athletes and staff. We are excited to be able to work with Fitbit and Stanford Medicine on this innovative project, which we hope will advance important COVID-19 research,” said Maggy Carlyle, General Counsel of the Pac-12 Conference.
“We are dedicated to ensuring a safe continuation of education and athletic play during the pandemic, and we hope that what we learn will not only help mitigate the risk of outbreaks on Pac-12 campuses but will positively impact other educational and athletics communities across the country.”