Digital health news briefs

By Dave Muoio 01:28 pm October 9, 2019
Medicare Advantage plan reimbursing for Apple Watches. Startup Medicare payer Devoted Health will be offering Apple Watches to its members as a fitness benefit, according to a report from CNBC that MobiHealthNews confirmed with the company. Devoted Health wrote in its marketing materials that it will be covering $150 of the cost of “wearable devices like an Apple Watch” per year alongside other...
By Dave Muoio 03:10 pm October 1, 2019
Sixth time's the charm? Roche’s Accu-Chek Connect Diabetes Management App has notched its sixth device recall from the FDA, this time due to meter-to-app data transfer issues for users with Android OS 8.0 and above. According to the agency’s posting, Roche notified partners, users and call centers of the issue and released and update addressing the problem before the end of that month. Prior to...
By Dave Muoio 02:31 pm September 4, 2019
Even more ECG. Electronics hardware company Asus pulled back the curtain on its latest health and fitness smartwatch today at IFA 2019 in Berlin. Engadget, TechRadar and others report that the VivoWatch SP includes a built-in ECG sensor alongside a PPG sensor, GPS tracking, an altimeter and roughly 14 days of battery life. The company is aiming for worldwide availability before the end of the...
By Dave Muoio 03:08 pm August 26, 2019
Eggs, milk, remote care. Thanks to a partnership between Texas grocery chain H-E-B and Reliant Immune Diagnostics, consumers seeking a mobile telemedicine consultation can purchase an appointment while stocking up the fridge. The free-to-download MDBox platform offers symptom-driven video consultations and prescriptions from licensed providers for a flat, upfront fee. Now, patients can visit the...
By Dave Muoio 03:20 pm August 20, 2019
Trouble in Cupertino. Morale is low and tensions are high within Apple’s health team, where conflicting ideas and strategies have led to a number of high-profile departures, according to a new report from CNBC. While the company’s primary focus has so far been on new features for generally healthy users, anonymous employees said that some team members wanted to tackle major healthcare challenges...
By Dave Muoio 03:40 pm August 5, 2019
Sleep tracking, iOS support comes to Google Fit. Google Fit saw an update on Friday that allows the health tracking app to connect with sleep apps and services, thereby allowing users to monitor their rest within Google’s product. The tool’s iPhone app has also received a boost that brings the run, hike or biking route summaries of the Android version those pairing an iPhone with a Wear OS...
By Dave Muoio 02:16 pm July 31, 2019
Peloton pulls the plug. Owners of the first generation of Peloton’s exercise bike touchscreens will no longer be receiving new software updates for their device, the company announced in a message on its support page. The touchscreen will still be able to access content, but the company is recommending that these users purchase a hardware upgrade so that they may continue to receive new feature...
By Cara Dartnell-Steinberg 11:27 am July 16, 2019
VitalityHealth and Doctify's new website. Health insurer VitalityHealth has partnered with Doctify, a leading online review and booking platform for medical consultants. They have developed ‘Vitality Specialist Finder’, a website where members can refine their search for doctors by speciality, rating and location, leave reviews and book appointments 24 hours a day. Dr Ali Hasan, clinical...
By Dave Muoio 03:13 pm June 25, 2019
Smart diaper detects UTIs. Purdue University researchers have developed a disposable, urinary tract infection-detecting sensor that is self-powered and can be embedded into diaper. The autonomous sensor activates upon exposure to urine, checks for compounds often associated with the infection and then wirelessly transmits the results to a smartphone if positive. “We have at least two big...
By Dave Muoio 04:18 pm May 22, 2019
ECG, eh? The Apple Watch Series 4’s ECG and irregular heart rhythm notification functions have received approval from Canada’s health product regulator, according to listings on Health Canada’s website that were recently spotted by iPhone in Canada. With these in hand, its likely that devices owners living in the Great White North will soon have access to features that have so far been activated...