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13/05/2020

Germany tests system to ensure timely Covid-19 hospital treatment

Researchers at the Technical University of Munich (TUM) are investigating whether sensor monitoring can aid in reducing Covid-19 mortality. The project is part of Germany’s response to the pandemic, the efficacy of which has been praised globally.

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The program builds on the country’s SARS-CoV-2 testing and tracking efforts. It involves monitoring Covid-19 patients 24 hours a day for as long as 14 days and at home. Deteriorating vital signs trigger a rapid, treatment response, with the goal of improving survivability and easing hospital workloads.

The TUM team is working with the Klinikum rechts der Isar (Klinikum). High-tech, in-ear, sensors made by the Munich digital health start-up Cosinuss are at the heart of the project. Patients wear the device, which tracks temperature, blood oxygen saturation, respiration, and pulse every 15 minutes. It transmits this data to the Klinikum, where a computer analyses it and signals if patient condition is rapidly worsening.

A senior doctor and professor at the Klinikum, Georg Schmidt, is overseeing the work. He explains, ”In these cases, patients must be admitted to a hospital as quickly as possible. The sooner they receive good medical treatment, the better the prognosis.” He says the system eliminates uncertainties about measurements and decisions to contact a doctor or hospital.

Munich health authorities are incorporating the sensors into its track and trace program. Covid-19 patients over sixty in home isolation are currently eligible to volunteer to take part. If a data assessment team at the Klinikum detects worsening vital signs, they will directly send first responders to the patient’s address to get them to the hospital without delay.

To learn more about how medical research, business, and government cooperate like this to give Germany one of the best healthcare systems in the world, the export initiative for the German healthcare industry, HEALTH MADE IN GERMANY, is the place to look. The initiative monitors all the industry’s “vital signs” and provides a wealth of information about German healthcare in guides profiling the medical technology, digital health, and contract research sectors, among others.

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