Fitbit, Google sign new innovative healthcare partnership

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In this case, its Cloud system is set to host a Fitbit dashboard, whereby caregivers can monitor health, as well as plan and assign fitness plans for patients.

In a 2015 security incident, hackers gained access to the accounts of dozens of Fitbit wearable fitness device users through leaked email addresses and passwords from third-party sites. The aim eventually is to allow doctors to get health data straight from Fitbits on their patients' wrists. This will give not just the patients but also the clinicians a bigger picture of the patient profile in order to make healthcare more personalized rather than just generic. Fitbit will use the API to ensure that its data is safely transferred to Google's cloud. This includes the ability to link data from FIT to electronic medical records. And if some future Fitbit health applications fall under the umbrella of what the FDA deems SaMD products, Teppler worries about potential patient safety concerns.

Google's Cloud for Healthcare initiative happens to be a massive effort in creating a network of sorts that would comprise of healthcare professionals and medical centers at one end with users of smart wearable health tracking systems being the other. In terms of partnerships, this one makes sense - if you ignore the concerning data sharing practices.

Fitbit co-founders, James Park and Eric Friedman came up with the idea for their health and fitness product in 2007.

Fitbit has sold some 76 million devices and has an active user base of 25 million.

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Taking another stride in the digital healthcare segment, Google announced its collaboration with Fitbit to help drive positive health outcomes at scale.

"Fitbit intends to use Google's new Cloud Healthcare API to help the company integrate further into the healthcare system, such as by connecting user data with electronic medical records", the companies said.

Google Cloud will provide Fitbit with next-generation cloud services and engineering support, allowing Fitbit to scale faster.

The two companies will also look to help better manage chronic conditions like diabetes and hypertension using Fitbit's recently acquired Twine Health. The steady flow of health data would also help doctors identify otherwise hard to diagnose diseases and react accordingly, the companies hope.

At the time of publishing, we haven't heard back from Fitbit.

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