Spoonful of technology

Words by Cheyenne Eugene

From apps to AI, GOLD highlights four recently developed technological tools that are set to amplify the pharmaceutical industry’s ability to deliver value for patients and healthcare professionals


Cough diagnostic for COVID-19


ResApp Health, a digital health company, has achieved positive results from its pilot clinical trial for a new COVID-19 diagnostic app. The smartphone-based test uses machine learning to analyse the sound of a user’s cough and has reportedly detected COVID-19 in 92% of participants with the infection. ResApp states that this level of accuracy exceeds the sensitivity of traditional rapid antigen tests.


Slow-release eye drops innovation


Optifye Therapeutics, a Swiss-based pharmaceutical company, and DelSiTech, a silica drug delivery technology firm, have partnered to tackle poor adherence to eye drops. The pair have developed a controlled-release version of Optify’s dexamethasone drops, which gradually releases as the matrix biodegrades. This reduces administration from between four and 10 times a day to once a day.


New app for heart disease detection


Heart-health startup Eko has launched a new version of its app that can be used in conjunction with its smart stethoscopes. The redesigned platform harnesses an artificial intelligence algorithm to help detect heart disease symptoms such as heart murmurs and atrial fibrillation. Eko reports that the algorithm for heart murmur detection has a 87.5% sensitivity and 87.8% specificity, which is comparable to the performance of a human expert.


Clarification on digital endpoints for payers


In collaboration with Janssen, Merck, Pfizer and others, the Digital Medicine Society has introduced the ‘3Ps of Digital Endpoint Value’ – a toolkit of resources to help payers use evidence from digital endpoints in their pricing and reimbursement decisions. The toolkit addresses the current lack of clarification around how payers might regard digital endpoint data in their decision making. It also defines and exhibits the value of digital endpoints overall.


This article features in GOLD 21 – read the full issue here.