Qualcomm, Telcare, iHealth to Unveil Health Monitoring Products at CES

At CES, Telcare will show a 3G blood glucose meter featuring a Qualcomm wireless module, while iHealth launches a blood pressure monitoring application for the iPhone and iPad.

Mobile technology company Qualcomm has announced that it will integrate its wireless IEM (Internet of Everything Module) into health care technology provider Telcare's 3G-enabled 3GM blood glucose meter.

Announced on Jan. 4, the Telcare device will be on display at Qualcomm's booth at CES (the Consumer Electronics Show) in Las Vegas Jan. 6-9.

The new product is part of a growing number of consumer wireless devices that allow patients to monitor chronic conditions such as diabetes and share the results with caregivers, including physicians and family members.

Currently a prototype, Telcare's 3GM uses 3G networks to transfer a patient's blood sugar reading to a caregiver or physician's mobile device in real time.

"Real-time engagement with caregivers is particularly beneficial for parents and family members looking after diabetic children and elderly people, where family support can mean the difference between a good day and a trip to the emergency room," Jonathan Javitt, Telcare's CEO, said in a statement. Based in Bethesda, Md., Telcare also manufactures wireless scales and blood pressure cuffs.

Of American adults today, 1 in 10 have diabetes, according to Javitt, who adds that the prevalence of the disease might triple within 40 years.

Qualcomm's low-power IEM module allows mobile devices that support 3G to communicate with each other. It also supports Bluetooth for devices in closer proximity and features motion sensors, which can help track when patients might fall or need help. IEM modules integrate with wearable wireless mobile devices.

In addition, the IEM module incorporates GPS, an accelerometer and standard interfaces for BrewMP, Qualcomm's scalable mobile OS.

"Wireless connectivity is becoming widely recognized for its inherent benefits for both medical devices and the overall health care industry," Don Jones, vice president of business development for wireless health at Qualcomm, said in a statement. "The IEM provides these capabilities to enable people from all walks of life to better manage their health."

The integration of 3G technology with medical devices can reduce health care costs and enable underserved communities to gain more efficient treatment and therapies, Jones said in a Qualcomm blog post.

Also at CES, digital health care product manufacturer iHealth Lab will unveil its iHealth Blood Pressure Monitoring System for the iPhone, iPad and iPod Touch.

The app, a free download from iTunes, allows consumers to monitor their blood pressure on their own and share the results with a physician, family and friends, iHealth reports. In addition to the mobile app, the product consists of a $99.95 hardware bundle incorporating a hardware dock and blood pressure arm cuff.

"Empowering people to manage their personal health care is our passion," Yi Liu, iHealth's CEO, said in a statement. "The future of health management starts with the individual. By identifying how daily activities affect one's vitals like blood pressure and heart rate, people can be more proactive about their personal health care."

iHealth Lab is a unit of Chinese company Andon Health, which manufacturers consumer blood pressure monitors, Forbes reports.