How wearable artificial intelligence can help you recover from the new coronavirus


The Illinois program provides people recovering from covid-19 with a take-home kit that includes a pulse oximeter, a disposable sensor patch that supports Bluetooth, and a paired smartphone. The software obtains data from wearable patches and uses machine learning to develop a profile of each person’s vital signs. When the patient’s vital signs (such as heart rate) deviate from the normal level, the monitoring system will remotely alert the clinician.

Usually, patients recovering from the new coronavirus may go home with a pulse oximeter. The developers of PhysIQ stated that their system is more sensitive because it uses artificial intelligence to understand each patient’s body, and its creator claims that it is more likely to predict important changes.

“This is a huge benefit,” said Terry Vanden Hawke, The chief medical officer and head of emergency medicine at the University of Illinois Health, which hosted the pilot. Working with COVID-19 is difficult, he said: “When you work in the emergency department, it is sad to see patients who have waited too long to come in for help. They need intensive care with a ventilator. You bear with me. Keep asking,’If we can warn them four days ago, can we stop this?'”

Like Angela Mitchell, most study participants were African-American. The other big group is Latino.Many people also suffer from risk factors such as diabetes, obesity, high blood pressure or lung disease, which may cause Complex covid-19 recoveryFor example, Mitchell suffers from diabetes, high blood pressure and asthma.

African-American and Latino communities have been hit hardest Chicago pandemic And all over the country.Many people are essential workers or Live in high-density, multi-generational housing.

For example, there are 11 people in Mitchell’s family, including her husband, three daughters and six grandchildren. “I do everything with my family. We even share covid-19 together!” she said with a smile. In March 2020, her two daughters tested positive, followed by her husband, and then Mitchell himself.

Although African Americans make up only 30% of Chicago’s population, they make up Approximately 70The percentage of the city’s earliest covid-19 cases. This percentage has fallen, but the death rate of African Americans recovering from covid-19 is still two to three times that of whites, and vaccination campaigns have been less successful in reaching this community. The researchers of the study said that the PhysIQ system can help improve survival, as they did with Mitchell, sending patients to the emergency room before it’s too late.

Lessons from the jet engine

Gary Conkright, the founder of PhysIQ, had previous experience in remote monitoring, but had no experience in humans. In the mid-1990s, he worked with the University of Chicago to develop an early-stage artificial intelligence startup called Smart Signal. The company uses machine learning to remotely monitor the performance of jet engines and nuclear power plant equipment.

“Our technology is very good at detecting subtle changes, which are the earliest predictors of problems,” Conclet said. “We discovered jet engine problems before General Electric, Pratt & Whitney and Rolls-Royce, because we developed individual models for each engine.”

Smart Signal was acquired by General Electric, but Conkright reserves the right to apply the algorithm to the human body. He said that at that time, his mother was suffering from chronic obstructive pulmonary disease and was rushed to the intensive care unit many times. The entrepreneur wants to know if he can monitor her recovery remotely by adjusting the existing artificial intelligence system. Result: PhysIQ and algorithms now used to monitor patients with heart disease, COPD, and covid-19.

Conkright says its power lies in its ability to create a unique “baseline” for each patient—a snapshot of that person’s norms—and then detect the smallest changes that may cause concern.

The algorithm only takes about 36 hours to create a profile for everyone.

The system begins to understand “what you look like in everyday life,” Vanden Hoek said. “You may be breathing faster, your activity level may drop, or your heart rate is different from the baseline. Advanced practice providers can view these alerts and decide to call that person to check. If there is a problem”-for example, underlying heart or respiratory failure Say-“They can refer to a doctor, or even emergency care or emergency department.”

In the pilot, clinicians monitor the data flow around the clock. When a participant’s condition changes slightly, the system will alert the medical staff-for example, if their heart rate is different from normal during the day.

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