Monday, August 8, 2022

NICE Recommends First Smartphone-Based ECG for the Detection of Atrial Fibrillation

AliveCor, the global leader in FDA-cleared personal electrocardiogram (ECG) technology, announced that the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) has issued Medical Technologies Guidance (MTG) recommending KardiaMobile as an option for detecting atrial fibrillation (AF) for people with suspected paroxysmal AF, who present with symptoms such as palpitations and are referred for ambulatory ECG monitoring by a clinician. KardiaMobile is the first personal ECG to be recommended by NICE for use within the National Health Service (NHS) in England and Wales. KardiaMobile would be prescribed by a healthcare professional for people experiencing arrhythmia (irregular heart rhythm) symptoms more than 24 hours apart. The instructions for use state that all interpretations of ECG recordings are reviewed by a healthcare professional and used to support clinical decision making.

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AF, the most common form of arrhythmia ,2 is a leading cause of AF-related stroke.4 Almost half of the 1.3 million people in the UK living with AF are undiagnosed,2,3 leaving them particularly at risk of suffering the life-changing, and often devastating, effects of this serious form of stroke.5 Stroke detection and prevention is key to the NHS Long Term Plan,6 in efforts to save thousands of lives and reduce the staggering costs of disease – approximately £3 billion per year direct costs to the NHS, with further £4 billion to the UK economy in lost productivity, disability and informal care.

“AF diagnosis rates across the UK pre-pandemic were already too low. With difficulties in accessing in-person care and increased waiting times, concern is that diagnosis rates have fallen further, leaving thousands of people at risk of life-threatening cardiovascular complications, such as an AF-related stroke” said Professor Matt Reed, RCEM Professor, Consultant and NRS Fellow in Emergency Medicine, NHS Lothian. “With the NHS over-stretched, it is encouraging that NICE has recognised the value of utilising smart technology to support clinicians. Today’s recommendation of KardiaMobile – a clinically-validated digital tool to allow people to monitor their heart rhythm at home, avoiding the need for hospital appointments – is a great step forward for cardiac services.”

“Many people experience various symptoms but do not realise it may be a heart rhythm disorder such as AF. If medical attention is not sought it leaves them exposed to a much higher risk of AF-related stroke. KardiaMobile can be used to monitor a person’s heart rhythm at any time, regardless of whether or not people show signs or symptoms of AF. This ultimately means AF can be detected faster, leading to a quicker diagnosis and therefore more lives being protected against AF-related stroke and consequences of suffering with AF,” said Mrs Trudie Lobban MBE, Founder and Trustee of Arrhythmia Alliance & AF Association.

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