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Booking Doctors Appointments Easier Thanks To Google

Through the addition of a new Search feature, Google are looking to make booking doctors appointments easier and more convenient. Those looking to book a doctor from selected providers will have appointment availability displayed.

The US tech company showed off several developments during their ‘The Check Up’ annual health event.

Currently plans are to roll the feature out initially in the US, and only with select providers, as it is in very early stages. Google are working closely with CVS’ MinuteClinic and several other scheduling providers to ensure the quick and smooth rollout of the new feature.

Credit: Google

Alongside the new feature, Google also announced pending clearance from the US Food and Drug Administration for the photoplethysmography algorithm found in their FitBit wearable heart rate monitors. The algorithm accurately detects heartrate and can pick up on irregular heartbeats.

A heart study run by FitBit and led by a Massachusetts General Hospital heart study showed that the algorithm was 98% accurate in identifying undiagnosed atrial fibrillation (AFib).

Currently there is no news on when the FDA will provide clearance on the algorithm, allowing Google to market their product as a medical device.

Furthermore, the tech giant revealed research results demonstrating that smartphone photos of eyes can identify aspects of heart health such as cholesterol and blood pressure. They are currently looking into ways in which the cameras can identify other relevant diseases.

Finally, Google announced it had begun research into global AI initiatives, specifically to with Ultrasound technology as part of a partnership Northwestern Medicine. The research may reveal ways to simplify pre-natal ultrasounds and make it easier to provide these services.

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