Doctors adopt smart ring to fight coronavirus

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Healthcare workers in San Francisco, United States, received smart rings that work as allies in fighting the new coronavirus. The accessory manufactured by the company Oura has technologies such as infrared LEDs, NTC temperature sensors, an accelerometer and a gyroscope. The components allow you to monitor body temperature, heart rate and other vital signs.

The device is able to capture the change in body temperature, one of the most important symptoms to be observed. Precisely for this reason, smart thermometers have also been selected to help fight Covid-19 respiratory syndrome.

Professionals at the UCSF Medical Center (University of California San Francisco) and Oura aim to create an algorithm that is able to detect the first symptoms of the virus, so that people can quarantine themselves more efficiently.

The strategy adopted in Wuhan, the epicenter of the pandemic, was to establish a habit among patients to report the temperature daily and isolate themselves at the first sign of fever. For the diagnosis to be possible with the help of the ring, it will be necessary for users to deliver their medical data to whoever is monitoring them. However, this ends up raising concerns about data privacy. Oura has already asked 150,000 users to share their information.

The fear of the virus returning in the autumn is what drives the search for equipment that can optimize the diagnosis and the autonomous quarantine process of the patient who presents the symptoms.

Assistant Professor of Psychiatry at UCSF, Ashley Mason, is responsible for research on the use of saunas and extreme temperatures as a cure for depression. The doctor interrupted the progress of the analysis and quickly focused on the current pandemic, which resulted in the conclusion that points to a connection between body temperature and coronavirus. Therefore, he contacted the CEO of Oura Health, Harpreet Rai, and explained that the rings would be useful in diagnosing the coronavirus.

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The Oura ring is a lightweight wearable made from titanium. The non-metallic seamless internal molding is completely water resistant. The battery life can reach seven days after wireless charging for one hour. An application accessed by cell phone – restricted to iPhones – allows you to consult the results of the body at any time of the day.

In addition to this device, there are other companies showing solidarity with the moment and providing services, as is the case of Razer – a game company that committed to manufacture and donate up to one million surgical masks.


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