Fitbit Inc is developing a method to detect irregular heart rhythm in time through a partnership with Bristol-Myers Squibb-Pfizer Alliance, as the wearable device maker looks to match a feature available on rival Apple’s Watch.
The Bristol-Myers Squibb-Pfizer Alliance and Fitbit plan to collaborate on the development of educational content and guidance to support people at increased risk for atrial fibrillation (AFib). Upon submission and U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) clearance of the AFib detection software on Fitbit devices, the parties will aim to provide users with appropriate information to help encourage and inform discussions with their physicians.
AFib is the most common type of irregular heartbeat and is a significant risk factor for stroke. Because AFib can be asymptomatic, it can often go undetected, and some studies suggest that more than 25 percent of people who have the condition find out after they have a stroke.
Fitbit has been pushing deeper into the healthcare space and in August tied up with the Singapore government to provide fitness trackers and services in a health program that the company said could reach up to one million users.