New Delhi, May 24, 2021: With India reeling under the COVID-19 pandemic since last year, oximeters have been become an important item for households, especially since the severe second wave. However, with an increase in demand for the vital health device, prices of pulse oximeters have been hiked by manufacturers. A good pulse oximeter can easily cost around Rs 2,000 these days.
To replace the oximeter, a Kolkata-based health startup has developed a mobile app. The new app called CarePlix Vital’s can monitor your blood oxygen level, pulse, and respiration rates.
According to a report in BGR.in, all one needs to do to use the mobile app is place a finger on their smartphone’s rear camera and flashlight and within seconds, the oxygen saturation (SpO2), pulse and respiration rates are displayed on the device.
“People needed a pulse oximeter or similar wearables such as a smartwatch to get their vitals such as oxygen saturation and pulse rate. The underlying technology in all of this is photoplethysmography or PPG,” Subhabrata Paul, Co-Founder CareNow Healthcare told The Indian Express.
“We are achieving this through our smartphone’s rear camera and flashlight. If you see the wearables and oximeters have infrared light sensors in them but for the phone, we just have the flashlight. Once we cover the rear camera and flashlight with the finger and start the scan for around 40 seconds, we are doing nothing but calculating the difference of light intensity and based on the difference we plot the PPG graph. From the graph, the SpO2 and pulse rate is derived,” the co-founder said.
The CarePlix Vital’s app is a registration-based application. It is said that the “application’s AI helps in determining the strength of finger placement that is, the stronger the finger placement, more accurate readings.”