The Apple Watch’s ECG app has finally been approved by the Australian Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA) so the device can create, record and store a single-channel electrocardiogram.
This comes a month after the TGA approved the Irregular Rhythm Notifications for Apple Watch with the ECG a natural follow-on which has only now been officially approved.
For these functions to work, customers will have to wait until the next Apple Watch update (watchOS 7.4) to use the ECG app and Irregular Rhythm Notifications.
This software update is expected in the coming weeks.
This update will also have to be configured through the Health app on your iPhone.
If a user were to receive an Irregular Rhythm Notification this could be a sign of atrial fibrillation – a condition that would require the patient to have an ECG to get a more complete examination of their heart rhythm.
Now the ECG is approved by the Australian TGA and when the new update to unlock these features is released, users will be able to place their finger on the Apple Watch crown and see a live readout of their heart beat.
ECG has been a feature of Apple Watch in other countries, including the US, for more than two years with the release of Apple Watch Series 4.
So users with Apple Watch Series 4 and later will be able to access the ECG functionality once the software update its installed.
The Withings ScanWatch was the first smartwatch in Australia to have ECG approved by the TGA in November 2020.
Heart arrhythmias are often underdiagnosed and easily missed if symptoms are not occurring during a doctor’s visit.
So having the Apple Watch with Irregular Rhythm Notification and ECG could be a lifesaving combination.