ROCKVILLE, Md., May 23, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- The healthcare and computing industries rely heavily on mobility. For the past decade, the healthcare industry has been adopting new technologies allowing medical professionals and patients to be more mobile. New medical devices strive to meet these requirements of the industry. One new innovation is the use of NFC (near field frequency) chips in medical devices for communication and data transfer.
Pulse oximetry is in the forefront of this innovation. The traditional tabletop units are still in use, but the use of a pulse oximeter has become broader from clinical use to home use. A pulse oximeter is a medical device used to measure the percentage of blood oxygen saturation and pulse rate of an individual. Modern pulse oximeters are smaller than most smart phones, run on standard AAA batteries, and have the ability to store information within the device. A handful of pulse oximeter manufacturers have taken the initial step to incorporate NFC technology into their devices. Their intent is to be able to transmit stored data from the oximeter to another source like a tablet or a smart phone. Over the past few years, medical professionals have voiced a great interest in this application, since the number of patients with respiratory illnesses is on the rise in the United States.
Incorporating NFC technology into pulse oximetry requires an initiator device and a target. The initiator actively generates a radio frequency (RF) field. In the case of a pulse oximeter, peer to peer NFC communication is being utilized, where both devices are battery powered. Since the next generation of iPads and iPhones from Apple are slated to have NFC chips using RF technology, by installing an application on these devices will allow for the transmission of data from the