NEW YORK, June 4, 2020 /PRNewswire/ -- As a result of the pandemic and the measures taken to contain it, companies across the U.S. are experiencing plunging demand and record unemployment. Yet, for some sectors, this is an opportunity. For example, the digital health sector is going through a period of strong growth as the transition to remote services has been significantly accelerated. Digital health products and services vary, from telehealth to remote monitoring tools, as well as publicly traded companies and venture-backed businesses, which are all experiencing surging growth. Most commonly, medical wearable devices are designed to collect data and measure vital signs such as heart rate, blood pressure, blood oxygen saturation, blood glucose levels and more. And overall, the global wearable medical device market size is expected to reach USD 93.19 Billion by 2027 while expanding at a CAGR of 27.9%, according to Grand View Research. Nemaura Medical, Inc. (NASDAQ: NMRD), DexCom, Inc. (NASDAQ: DXCM), Apple Inc. (NASDAQ: AAPL), Koninklijke Philips N.V. (NASDAQ: PHG), Garmin Ltd. (NASDAQ: GRMN)
Remote medical monitoring is a complex sector. Herman Bonner, communication specialist at Firstbeat, which powers stress tracking features in a host of wearables from the likes of Garmin, Huawei and Suunto, explained in an article by Wareable that "it takes a lot of specialized expertise in mathematics, signal processing, pattern recognition, and programming to get to the point where you are providing useful information to people." But innovation is nonetheless happening; Taiwan-founded healthcare wearable device company iWEECARE announced, according to MobiHealthNews, that its flagship product, Temp Pal, has been in use to help combat COVID-19 spread in hospitals and self-quarantine. The cloud-based continuous temperature monitoring system can lower the risk of infections and prevents the overwhelming of health systems by reducing physical contact between caregivers and patients.
Nemaura Medical, Inc. (NASDAQ: NMRD) announced earlier in April, "plans for a new product line by seeking to immediately repurpose sugarBEAT® as a CTM since its inbuilt temperature sensor is capable of continuously tracking body temperature through the skin. Nemaura is considering various options to expedite the launch of a CTM, including potential partnerships and direct to consumer sales.
CTM's have been recognised as potentially having a key role to play in battling COVID-19, with Google's Verily announcing plans to develop a small body worn temperature patch that transmits data to a phone application to provide timely notification of fever and support earlier diagnosis and treatment of viral infections like the flu or coronavirus1.Nemaura's body worn skin patch designed to monitor glucose levels on the skin at 5 minute intervals also contains a thermistor which measures skin temperature as an integral part of the device, and we believe that the device could easily be repurposed for this standalone function. The CGM device is CE approved in Europe and in commercial production in the UK.
'We see a significant commercial opportunity to utilise our BEAT® platform technology specifically for CTM purposes with data being automatically sent by low energy Bluetooth to a mobile phone app from which it can then be reviewed by the user and/or sent to a family member or caregiver. We believe that there are parallels between family members and caregivers remotely monitoring glucose fluctuations in a person, and monitoring fever caused by viral infections, providing a means of remote tracking and intervention. In the current climate we see this as an opportunity to contribute to general wellbeing and patient management' stated Dr. Faz Chowdhury, Nemaura's CEO.
Several diseases including COVID-19 are characterised by fever (an increase in body temperature) meaning that temperature monitoring can be a vital tool in the detection of such conditions and consequently a potential means of containing the spread of the disease through early self-isolation. Measuring body temperature on a continuous basis may also be used to track the course of a disease and so allow physicians to analyse the effectiveness of treatments and thus pro-actively adapt to improve outcomes.
Dr. Chowdhury further stated 'body temperature can vary depending on the age of the person, their level of (recent) physical activity, the time the measurement is taken and importantly where on the body the temperature is taken. For this reason, I believe that the ability to track the temperature continuously over time and measure the rate at which it is rising or falling would be a superior form of monitoring a person than sporadic measurements taken using a more traditional thermometer.'
We believe that multiple other future uses are foreseen for a CTM including tracking ovulation to improve the chances of conception and for predicting/preventing diabetes related foot complications such as ulcers which can eventually lead to amputation if not detected early enough, whereby poor blood circulation can be rapidly detected by continuous temperature monitoring of the affected region. Further details are provided in a publication on the company's website: https://nemauramedical.com/wp-content/uploads/2020/04/NMRD-Temp-Monitoring-USA-March-2020-FINAL-V1.1.pdf
Nemaura is establishing the regulatory framework for launching the CTM in a number of worldwide territories, including initial immediate use to provide qualitative indications without disease diagnosis."
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DexCom, Inc. (NASDAQ: DXCM) and Insulet Corporation have announced earlier this year a global commercialization agreement to combine current and future Dexcom continuous glucose monitoring systems (CGM) with Insulet's trusted tubeless insulin delivery Pod into the Omnipod Horizon™ System for automated insulin delivery, currently in pivotal trial. Under the terms of the non-exclusive agreement, the Omnipod Horizon Automated Insulin Delivery (AID) System will use sensor values from the Dexcom G6 and next generation G7 CGM systems to predict glucose levels into the future and automatically adjust the insulin dose required to help reduce the occurrence of blood glucose highs and lows. "Everyone at Dexcom is excited to be in the final stages of integrating Dexcom CGM technology into the Omnipod Horizon System," said Kevin Sayer, Executive Chairman, President and CEO of Dexcom. "This system will bring together the demonstrated accuracy of Dexcom CGM with Omnipod's tubeless insulin delivery Pod which provides a simple user experience and freedom from injections and tubes. It will be a truly transformative, automated insulin delivery system giving more options to people with diabetes." "This agreement with Dexcom represents an incredible milestone for our two organizations in realizing the benefits of interoperability," said Shacey Petrovic, President and CEO of Insulet. "The ability to integrate with new innovation efficiently will offer consumers the latest and greatest in Pod and sensor technology, while providing the freedom of choice so they can live life to the fullest."
Apple Inc. (NASDAQ: AAPL) announced last year that the ECG app on Apple Watch Series 4, a direct-to-consumer product that enables customers to take an electrocardiogram right from their wrist, is available in Hong Kong and 19 European countries, including France, Germany, Italy, Spain and the United Kingdom. The ECG app and irregular rhythm notification feature can alert users to signs of AFib. Left untreated, AFib is one of the leading conditions that can result in stroke, the second most common cause of death around the world. "We've seen the ECG app and irregular rhythm notifications on Apple Watch have meaningful impact on our customers across the United States," said Jeff Williams, Apple's chief operating officer. "We are excited to bring these features to customers in Europe and Hong Kong, giving them access to empowering information about their heart health."
Koninklijke Philips N.V. (NASDAQ: PHG) announced this week that the US FDA has issued an Emergency Use Authorization (EUA) for Philips' IntelliVue Patient Monitors MX750/MX850 and its IntelliVue Active Displays AD75/AD85, for use in the US during the COVID-19 health emergency . These patient monitoring solutions support infection-control protocols and remotely provide critical patient information for caregivers, capabilities that are much needed when caring for hospitalized COVID-19 patients. Philips' IntelliVue Patient Monitors MX750/MX850 and IntelliVue Active Displays AD75/AD85 received CE mark in 2019 and are already being used in hospitals across Europe. The EUA allows Philips to start delivering the new remote patient monitoring solution to hospitals in the US, and the company is committed to submitting a 510(k) to FDA for this acute care solution in the course of 2020.
Garmin Ltd. (NASDAQ: GRMN), Garmin International, Inc., announced last year a breakthrough initiative with SCOR Global Life to inspire consumers around the world to lead healthier lives. The collaboration supports an initial launch of SCOR's enhanced Biological Age Model BAM™ solution with Taiwanese insurer Nanshan. The algorithm leverages Garmin wearables data to compute a person's biological age, providing a clear, easy-to-understand health indicator useful for both consumers and insurers. "Garmin is continuously expanding its smartwatch lineup and developing new technologies to promote active and healthy lifestyles," said Joe Schrick, Garmin Vice President fitness segment. "Garmin is eager to work with SCOR Global Life on an innovative underwriting solution that helps insurers leverage objective data from Garmin wearables and responds to the needs of health-conscious consumers." When combined with the Good Life app – built by SCOR's InsurTech solution provider, ReMark – the user-friendly ecosystem supports and encourages consumer lifestyle aspirations.
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