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Apple Watch Detects Diabetes with 85% Accuracy

Apple Watch Detects Diabetes with 85% Accuracy

Apple Watch Detects Diabetes with 85% Accuracy

The Apple watch is not just a hi-tech fashion statement but is now able to detect diabetes with 85% accuracy, according to part of a larger DeepHeart study with Cardiogram and UCSF.  It used data from Apple Watch users and detected 462 of them as having diabetes using the watch’s built-in heart rate sensor and artificial intelligence-based algorithms.  In previous studies it was found that heart rate variability could predict incident diabetes and hypertension, thus opening up the possibility of using the watch to to detect a diabetic patient.  Other conditions were detectable as well, please see below:

With 1 in 4 adults living with undiagnosed prediabetes or diabetes, it is becoming a growing problem in the U.S. Contributing to the growing problem is mainly the pain involved with checking blood glucose levels and keep their insulin balanced.  Early detection is one of the best ways to get diabetes under control before things get more complicated.  While other efforts have been made to create glucose sensing hardware, this is the first to use ordinary heart sensors paired with A.I. based algorithms to identify diabetes with no additional hardware.

More research is being done to increase the amount of diseases detectable through heart sensors, although caution is given that those in the study were already known to have diabetes.  Anyone who believes they are diabetic should see their doctor and not rely on the watch for diagnosis.  The conclusions are promising and we will see how far these methods will improve detection of diseases with simple readily-available tools used intelligently and efficiently.

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The Future of Medical Records on The Blockchain

The Future of Medical Records on The Blockchain

The Future of Medical Records on The Blockchain.

With the recent explosion of Bitcoin and all the hype surrounding it, the one thing that is for certain, is that it’s underlying technology called the blockchain will be an industry disruptor for many financial sectors in the years to come.  One of those sectors that can see a major use-case for such innovation is the health-related industries which has struggled with inefficiencies in data management, coordination, and it’s associated rising costs.

Along with additional costs, current EMR (Electronic Medical Records) and ePHI (Electronic Protected Health Information) systems incur a great amount of security risk including fraud and hacking.  These security risks not only endanger patient confidentiality but end up costing healthcare providers a substantial amount of resources yearly.  2016 alone resulted in more than 25 million compromised patient medical records costing the health industry over $500 million in fines and penalties.  The future prospects of blockchain technology aims to reduce these inherent inefficiencies by revolutionizing the speed, accuracy, convenience and security of patient EMR’s.

What is the Blockchain?

In a nutshell the blockchain technology can be described as “digital trust” and is the mechanism in which makes Bitcoin transactions secure between users, without the need for a third party.  This decentralized currency is completely redundant in that it copies a ledger containing all transactions ever made across multiple nodes throughout the network, thus making it hacker-proof and constantly reconcilable preventing things like “double spending” in where one uses the same coin to make multiple purchases.   Think of it like a like a reliable and automatic checks and balances already built in and autonomously executes what banks and payment processors spend millions to do manually on a large scale.

Blockchain Use-Cases.

Ever since the inception of Bitcoin, other cryptocurrencies and blockchain platforms have emerged, all with unique features, concepts and use-cases such Ethereum and Litecoin.  One new concept that is emerging is the idea of data integrity and security using this new technology, and one geared towards the healthcare industry is a new ICO (Initial Coin Offering) called Med-Chain.  According to their website “MedChain’s mission is to use blockchain technology to establish a better, more secure and transparent framework for Electronic Medical Records that vastly improves the quality of care for patients and helps reduce healthcare providers’ costs.”   This would be advantageous to all parties involved including patients taking more control over their own medical records as well as who has access to those records.

Smartphone applications are in development aiming to provide the most up-to-date information as well as notify patients of access requests by medical service providers, hospitals, and healthcare providers.  All information will be secure on the decentralized blockchain and encrypted, so it would be only accessible with the patient’s private key.  Software in development for healthcare providers will in turn provide near-instant access to medical records and could save billions in fines each year associated with data breaches and leaks.  This company looks like it has a promising business model and surely will have competitors in the future looking to solve the same problems within the Healthcare sector.

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