Mak­ers of health apps set­tle with N.Y. at­tor­ney gen­eral

Modern Healthcare - - REGIONAL NEWS - —Adam Ruben­fire

The mak­ers of three pop­u­lar healthre­lated mo­bile apps have reached set­tle­ments with the New York at­tor­ney gen­eral’s of­fice over al­le­ga­tions that they could have harmed con­sumers by giv­ing them wrong or mis­lead­ing re­sults.

Cardiio, Run­tas­tic and My Baby’s Beat will pay a to­tal of $30,000 in penal­ties, and have agreed to change their mar­ket­ing ma­te­ri­als and pri­vacy poli­cies as part of the set­tle­ment. The apps claimed to mea­sure vi­tal signs and other key health in­di­ca­tors, but were not backed up by sci­en­tific test­ing and did not make it clear to users that the apps are not med­i­cal de­vices and are not ap­proved by the U.S. Food and Drug Ad­min­is­tra­tion.

The set­tle­ments come af­ter a year­long in­ves­ti­ga­tion of mo­bile health apps by New York state At­tor­ney Gen­eral Eric Sch­nei­der­man.

Cam­bridge, Mass.-based Cardiio and Aus­tria-based Run­tas­tic had pre­vi­ously claimed that their apps could ac­cu­rately

mea­sure a per­son’s heart rate af­ter vig­or­ous ex­er­cise sim­ply by us­ing the iPhone’s cam­era and sen­sors, but failed to test their apps for that pur­pose, ac­cord­ing to the at­tor­ney gen­eral.

Matis, the Is­rael-based de­vel­oper of My Baby’s Beat, claimed its app could turn any smart­phone into a fe­tal heart mon­i­tor, de­spite the fact that the app has never been ap­proved by the FDA.

It’s also never been tested in com­par­i­son to a fe­tal heart mon­i­tor, fe­tal Dop­pler or any other de­vice sci­en­tif­i­cally proven to am­plify the sound of a fe­tal heart­beat, the at­tor­ney gen­eral said.

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