Fitbit integrates with virtual reality workout apps and more digital health deals

By Heather Mack
Share

It’s been a busy week for Fitbit. The San Francisco-based wearable company announced four different partnerships, three of which are integrations with the Works with Fitbit ecosystem.

Habit, the Campbell’s Soup-backed personalized nutrition startup that uses data from genetic tests and individual’s health and fitness goals to create tailored diet and exercise plans, will now incorporate Fitbit biometric data for each user’s plan. Using Fitbit-generated weight, body fat percentage and calories burned, Habit will measure and analyze the data to enhance nutrition and fitness coaching, leveraging real-time updates from any changes in the Fitbit app to make adjustments and feedback.

Indoor bicycle maker Peloton, which offers on-demand, virtual cycling classes with professional instructors available through an app (which also captures fitness metrics, workout history and offers the opportunity for competition and group classes), can now sync ride metrics directly to the Fitbit app to help riders see how cycling fits into their overall fitness goals. Each ride on Peloton will be logged as an exercise in the Fitbit app, so all Peloton workouts and Fitbit data will be in one centralized location.

Gaming company VirZoom is integrating Fitbit with its virtual reality workout – wherein users ride the company’s stationery bike with a VR headset to travel through race tracks, battlegrounds, countryside scenes in the forms of a racecar driver, tank commander or Pegasus as they pedal. Each workout will be logged in the Fitbit app as an exercise. More

UnitedHealthcare’s wellness program Motion will soon offer participants the ability to use Fitbit’s Charge 2 to track activity metrics via a customized integration with Motion’s Frequency, Intensity and Tenacity (F.I.T.) program. Using the device, participants can track progress on their daily goals and earn financial incentives that can be applied towards their healthcare plan. United Healthcare Motion, which is powered by Qualcomm Life’s 2net platform, is an employer-sponsored wellness program that launched in March 2016. With the integration of the Fitbit Charge 2, participants can earn up to $4 per day in credits by achieving one or more of their goals on each arm of the F.I.T program. All together, participants can earn up to $1,500 in Health Savings Account or Health Reimbursement Account credits per year.  More

Telemedicine software provider SnapMD has partnered with athenahealth’s “More Disruption, Please (MDP)” accelerator program. Through this collaboration, SnapMD’s cloud-based telemedicine platform, Virtual Care Management, is now available on the athenahealth marketplace to more than 85,000 healthcare providers. The platform is a white-label software platform that offers a tool set for comprehensive workflows and any form of virtual care via a single interface, using their healthcare providers’ own brand and clinicians of their choosing. “SnapMD has been widely regarded for its fully integrated intuitive interface, providing a meaningful experience for patient encounters with a powerful back-end system that enables truly integrated care delivery,” SnapMD CEO Dave Skibinski said in a statement. “With the athenahealth relationship and integration, healthcare providers delivering single or multiple telehealth services can now effectively deliver care remotely in a convenient digital environment under their operating umbrella.” More

WellDoc announced a partnership with the American Association of Diabetes Educators (AADE), a professional membership organization of over 14,000 diabetes educators. WellDoc will incorporate educational content from AADE into its FDA-cleared, reimbursable BlueStar system for diabetes management. Through the partnership, BlueStar users will have information delivered to them based on AADE's seven primary areas of self-management: Healthy Eating, Being Active, Monitoring, Taking Medication, Problem Solving, Reducing Risks and Healthy Coping. Educational materials will be re-worked for a digital format, with "bite-sized" lessons being delivered to patients at the moments when they'll have the most impact. More

American Well and EarlySense have partnered to make telemedicine visits available to users of EarlySense's bed-based sleep sensor. The service is related to EarlySense Live, the long-awaited home use version of the the Ramat Gan, Israel-based device maker's signature product. EarlySense's contact-free sensor, placed under the user's mattress, measures heart rate, breathing cycles, stress and sleep indicators. Up until now, EarlySense has mostly been used in hospitals and skilled nursing facilities. The device has been used by consumers through partnerships with companies like Samsung and iFit, but with EarlySense Live, the company is finally bringing the device into the home directly. And the partnership with American Well allows them to do so without having to worry that they are giving customers health data without a way to interpret it. More

The United States Department of Defense has tapped healthcare communication company Vocera Communications to deploy San Jose, California-based Vocera’s system in the Army’s Medical Command facilities around the world. The $14 million contract – Vocera’s largest to date – will equip Army care team members with the company’s wireless, hands-free clinical communications platform in 23 facilities. More

The UK's National Health Service has teamed up with UK startup Babylon for a trial testing whether or not a chatbot can effectively replace a call center for non-emergency medical triage. The six-month trial in north-central London will include 1.2 million covered citizens. Babylon is a major telemedicine provider in its native England. The company's direct-to-consumer offering starts with an AI-powered chatbot which can escalate up to a video visit if necessary. Triage via Babylon requires about 12 text messages and takes about a minute and a half. More