NYU doctor sues Apple over Apple Watch’s ability to detect atrial fibrillation

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Apple Watch’s capacity to distinguish atrial fibrillation has proven to save the lives of many users, yet a doctor at New York University has sued Apple for this feature. As indicated by Bloomberg, Dr. Joseph Wiesel asserts that Apple Watch abused its patent for the method of detecting cardiac arrhythmias.

Apple Watch can passively monitor heart rates and provide notifications when irregular heartbeats are detected. This is a common sign of atrial fibrillation, and newer Apple Watch models also support the ability to take an electrocardiogram with Digital Crown. In the lawsuit, Weasel said his patent was marked as an “innovative step” in monitoring atrial fibrillation. The patent shows how “irregular pulse rhythms can be observed at certain time intervals”. In March 2006, Wiesel received a patent entitled “Methods and Devices for Atrial Fibrillation”.

Wiesel, who currently teaches at NYU School of Medicine, also said that he contacted Apple in September 2017 about a partnership, but Apple did not respond to his request:

Wiesel said his invention covered “pioneering steps” in
atrial fibrillation detection by monitoring “irregular pulse rhythms
from a succession of time intervals.” He said he first contacted Apple
in September 2017, giving the Cupertino, California-based company
detailed information about the patent.

Apple has “refused to negotiate in good faith to avoid this lawsuit,” Wiesel contends in the suit

In recent years, Apple has made health a top priority, especially with Apple Watch. Apple CEO Tim Cook has repeatedly said that he believes Apple’s biggest contribution to humanity will be related to health.

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