The need for telemedicine has grown amid the coronavirus pandemic for cardiac patients suffering from congestive heart failure who want to avoid contracting the highly contagious virus. Published recently in the Journal of the American Heart Association, a study led by Dr Elad Maor of Sheba Medical Center in Israel, in collaboration with the Mayo Clinic, uses telemedicine voice recognition technology to assess patients’ risk for heart failure from the comfort of their own homes. Using voice-processing techniques, audio recordings can identify high-risk patients, allowing telemedicine centres to allocate more resources to these individuals. Dr Maor expects the technology to be available for use in the near future and suggests that it may have other applications as well. The Sheba Medical Center will begin a clinical trial based on this technology, involving patients with and without COVID-19. Patients will have their voice recorded to test the hypothesis that the voice can be used to identify respiratory disease. The article, “Vocal biomarker is associated with hospitalization and mortality among heart failure patients,” is available online at www.ahajournals.org/doi/full/10.1161/JAHA.119.013359.
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