Philips Biosensor warns against heart attacks

Philips' wearable heart monitor warns doctors of possible danger before it becomes life threatening. The algorithm patch, which is no bigger than the palm of your hand, monitors vital signs and streams them wirelessly to a cloud-based service called IntelliVue Guardian. The Wearable Biosensor alerts doctors via their smartphones or tablets, the moment it spots a problem.

Philips Wearable Biosensor

Philips Wearable Biosensor

The Biosensor sticks to the chest, over the heart, and can run for 3-4 days. It is not rechargeable. It continuously monitors respiratory rate, skin temperature, posture, and activity, including steps and falls. It also functions as a basic electrocardiogram (ECG), which measures the electrical activity of the heart reading both the heart rate and any irregularities.

Connected health care

All this data is streamed to IntelliVue Guardian, Philips’ new remote patient monitoring system. The system includes a patient monitor, wireless biosensor as well as clinical decision support software and services. The system is intended to be used in low acuity hospital settings, with the patient returning home and continuing to wear the biosensor.

Says Jeroen Tas, who heads up Philips Connected Care and Health Informatics division, “This gives us the opportunity to have patients wear a patch when they get discharged from the hospital and continue to monitor them when they get home. This is another proof-point around our ability to give patients seamless experiences in and out of the hospital.”

Medical-grade technology

The Wearable Biosensor connects to a smartphone with Bluetooth to stream data over the Internet—just as dozens of fitness bands do. It's an example of what Philips calls the consumerisation of health care. Since the 1990s, the 125-year-old Dutch technology firm (co-creator of the CD and DVD) has focused its operations more and more on medical-grade technology. The company from Eindhoven makes 40% of the world's patient monitors. The Wearable Biosensor is due to become available at the end of the year.