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Toronto’s University Health Network Launches New Apple Watch Study

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Toronto-based University Health Network (UHN) has announced a new Apple Watch study, led by Dr. Heather Ross.

The clinical Apple Watch study, in partnership with Apple, will see if remote monitoring via the wearable can help detect early signs of worsening heart failure.

According to UHN, data from Apple Watch collected by health sensors, mobility metrics and the Blood Oxygen app, for example, will be compared to data normally gathered from patients that undergo strenuous physical tests, to find early indications for early heart failure

“We think that biometric data derived from Apple Watch may provide comparable, precise, and accurate measurements of fitness, prognostic markers and early warning signals, compared to traditional diagnostics,” says Dr. Heather Ross, Division Head of Cardiology, at UHN’s Peter Munk Cardiac Centre, Scientific Lead, Ted Rogers Centre for Heart Research.

Participants asked to be part of the study will come from the heart function program at the Peter Munk Cardiac Centre. They will use an iPhone and an Apple Watch Series 6 as part of a three-month active monitoring study, while a two-year follow-up will take place afterwards.

“Surfacing heart health insights has played a key role in the evolution of Apple Watch and we’re continually humbled by the responses we hear from users on the impact it has had on their lives,” says Dr. Sumbul Desai, Apple’s vice president of Health.

“We’re thrilled to be collaborating with UHN and Dr. Heather Ross to better understand how the powerful sensors in Apple Watch can potentially help patients better manage heart failure, from the comfort of their own home,” added Dr. Desai.

Last fall, Apple launched new health studies which also included one at the UHN and involving Dr. Heather Ross.

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