Wearable Technology can soon detect infections

The smartwatch on your wrist might one day be key to containing the spread of viruses like the one behind COVID-19.

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Stanford, Scripps Research and Fitbit have unveiled an initiative that, if successful, would use wearables to catch the early signs of infection.

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They’re developing algorithms that would look for the elevated heart rates and temperatures that frequently signal an immune system response. You could get a warning at the earliest stages of illness, even without symptoms, and isolate yourself before you infect anyone else.

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The researchers are already aware of the potential challenges. Heart rate and temperature changes can be prompted by many innocuous events, such as exercise or watching a tense movie, and the algorithms will have to recognize that difference, also distinguish between viruses.

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Although it may be in the somewhat distant future, this is a great way to be proactive and use technology as a precaution rather than a reactive solution.

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