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A faulty production line

GPs set to gain access to 30-second fingertip AF testing device

A new tech device to speed up atrial fibrillation diagnosis has the potential to save the NHS £2bn, its developer has claimed.

The credit card-sized 'KardiaMobile', which links up to smartphone app, can produce an ECG reading to indicate whether a patient has AF in under 30 seconds.

Funded by NHS England's NHS Innovation Accelerator scheme, it will be distributed to GP practices in 15 areas of the country.

According to the developer, the device will replace the need for GPs to refer patients to hospital for an ECG.

GPs will be encouraged to use it as a screening-tool for atrial fibrillation during routine appointments or during other health checks.

AF affects £1.4m people in the UK, however half a million are undiagnosed and at risk of suffering strokes as a result, according to the Stroke Association.

Arrhythmia Alliance and AF Association chief executive Trudie Lobban said: ‘The device can be used at any time. AF can be diagnosed faster, anticoagulation therapy can be prescribed to reduce the risk of an AF-related stroke and treatment for AF can be accelerated.’

Device developer AliveCor vice president Francis White said: 'Providing our technology to GPs and hospitals around the UK offers a more efficient solution to AF diagnosis and may ultimately improve patient outcomes.'

NICE has piloted AF screening in GP practices, despite resistance from GP leaders.

Readers' comments (8)

  • Cobblers

    Still need to be referred to Arrhythmologist / Cardiologist.

    And the decision for anticlog isn't a given in AF especially if they have CKD. (Recent news)

    So might save an ECG referral if the practice doesn't have an ECG machine. Few of those IMO.

    Perhaps the money would be better spent on GP Global sum. Now there's a thought. :-)

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  • about the fingertip on the end of the doctor's finger. Irregular in rhythm and volume, anyone go to medical school

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  • Not funded or commissioned to screen for AF under GMS. If DH wants a screening programme they need to pay for it

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  • Took Early Retirement

    I'm with Monty. Perhaps this thing is for tea ladies to use, as they are being trained up to replace the HCAs who are being trained up to replace nurses, who are being trained up to replace all the missing GPs.

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  • Lots of these type of things available on eBay and without the need for a smartphone. Smells of big pharma marketing push to flog more NOACs

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  • I have one of these. really useful for patients with palpitations who say they have them right now in the consultation - you can demonstrate sinus rhythm right there and then
    not using it as an AF screening tool though!

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  • No way am I going to give out my phone number.

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  • I have personally used the finger tip ECG recorder ( and they are not expensive!) for event detection. They are invaluable. You can carry it around like a credit card in a wallet, and when your patient experiences palpitations take a recording, e-mail this off, and the one line tracing can be good for deciding on further investigation or a 12 lead ECT etc. Great little device, so much better than the chest recorder that we used for AF screening.

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