The efficacy and use of smart wearables such as a Ring or Smartwatch for assisting with health monitoring are gaining valuable traction with every passing day.
One area where wearable companies are hoping to gain traction is in recovery following a hospital procedure or critical diagnosis.
- Apple developing Apple-branded health hardware products
- Samsung Galaxy Watch 4 and Apple Watch S 7 may feature noninvasive blood glucose monitoring
- Japanese startup to launch first noninvasive wearable glucose monitor
South Korea-based wearable ring maker Sky Labs has partnered up with National Health Insurance Service Ilsan Hospital Institutional Review Board to study the effect of hybrid cardiac rehabilitation using a smart device. The new study is supported by Korea Disease Control and Prevention agency and sponsored by Inje University Sanggye Paik Hospital.
This novel study was approved and registered on Feb 16th, 2021.
Cardiac rehabilitation (CR) is a secondary prevention program for patients with cardiovascular diseases.
Although CR has been reimbursed by public health insurance service since February 2017 in Korea, CR participation is meager due to many factors.
The implementation barriers consist of the hospital, political, patient factors, and patient factors, including lack of cognition, cost, job, and distance from home to hospital.
Conventionally, CR is divided into center-based CR (CBCR) and home-based CR (HBCR).
Home-based cardiac rehab has not been popular due to a lack of proper communications between the patients and clinicians and concerns about unexpected heart attacks caused by non-monitored exercise.
The new study will utilize the smart Ring, CART-I from Skylabs, allowing for monitoring of vital signs of the patients and making it easy for communication with the clinicians.
This study aims to identify the clinical effects of hybrid CR by weekly telephone counseling based on the patients’ actual physical activities obtained from a smart device.
South Korea-based Skylabs is a preventive healthcare company engaged in patient-centric care by providing continuous monitoring capabilities.
The CART-I wearable ring allows for 24/7 heart monitoring and has 99.6% accuracy in detecting atrial fibrillation, and allows for a doctor to access the data remotely.
More importantly, the ‘Ring’ form factor of the wearable makes it more convenient over a smartwatch or band as users can wear it continually and not worry about taking it off.
Skylabs is also working to incorporate new features into its wearable ring platform. These features include detailed arrhythmia analysis, Blood pressure monitoring, heart failure, sleep apnea detection, COPD, and monitoring stress levels.
Medicare Part-B in the US provides coverage for Cardiac rehabilitation programs.
All cardiac rehabilitation programs typically include:
- A program to reduce your cardiac risk factors (such as nutritional counseling and education)
- Psychosocial assessment of your mental and emotional needs related to rehabilitation
- Individualized treatment plan and
- Outcome assessment
As US-based wearable companies engage in new clinical trials for remote health monitoring and rehabilitation programs, we should expect more digital health-based initiatives targeted at various recovery programs.
Companies such as Apple have already partnered with established life sciences firms such as Zimmer Biomet in developing rehab platforms that utilize Apple Watch.