Fitbit, Bristol-Myers Squibb, and Pfizer have announced that they are working together to help drive timely diagnosis of atrial fibrillation (AFib) with the aim of improving earlier detection in individuals at increased risk of stroke.
The BMS-Pfizer Alliance and Fitbit plan to collaborate on the development of educational content and guidance to support people at increased risk for AFib. Upon submission and U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) clearance of the AFib detection software on Fitbit devices, the parties will aim to provide users with appropriate information to help encourage and inform discussions with their physicians.
AFib is the most common type of irregular heartbeat and is a significant risk factor for stroke. Approximately eight million people in the United States are projected to be affected by AFib in 2019. As the U.S. population ages, this number is expected to rise, as adults aged 65 and older are at an increased risk of developing the condition. Because AFib can be asymptomatic, it can often go undetected, and some studies suggest that more than 25 percent of people who have the condition find out after they have a stroke.
Wearable technology has continued to become more integrated in the healthcare landscape as people have recognized the value that 24/7 health tracking can have for people of any age or health status, including those at increased risk for specific conditions. Yet, those who use wearables to track their heart rhythm may lack the education or guidance on what to do with the data gathered from their device.
The Bristol-Myers Squibb and Pfizer Alliance is committed to driving education and awareness about atrial fibrillation and venous thromboembolism. With long-standing cardiovascular leadership, global scale and expertise in this field, the Alliance strives to implement global, research-driven approaches to illuminate and address the unmet needs around strokes related to non-valvular atrial fibrillation, which are often fatal or debilitating.
Through collaborations with non-profit organizations, the Alliance aims to provide patients, physicians, and decision-makers with the information they need to understand and take appropriate action on risk factors associated with stroke and other cardiovascular conditions.