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Predicting influenza outbreak using Fitbit wearable technology

January 21, 2020

The rise of wearable technology, such as fitness trackers, has given unprecedented access to real-time data that could be leveraged to predict the next influenza (flu) outbreak.

In the US, approximately 7% of adults and approximately 20% of children are infected with the flu every year, according to estimates from the World Health Organization (WHO). Globally, the flu kills as many as 650,000 individuals each year. In a new study published in The Lancet, Dr Jennifer Radin and colleagues used de-identified data from Fitbit users on sleep and resting heart rate (RHR) to improve real-time prediction of influenza-like illness (ILI).