Canada Approves watchOS 9's AFib History Feature

Friday, July 29, 2022 11:21 AM

AFib History, one of watchOS 9's new health features, this week received regulatory approval in Canada, seemingly making it the first country to do so outside the United States ahead of the release of ‌watchOS 9‌ later this year.

AFib History allows individuals diagnosed with atrial fibrillation to view an estimate of how frequently their heart is in this type of arrhythmia, according to Apple. The feature is intended for individuals aged 22 years or older who have been diagnosed with atrial fibrillation.

Health Canada yesterday approved the AFib History for both the Apple Watch and the iPhone, regulatory filings show. Canada appears to be the second country to approve the new feature after the United States, where it received FDA clearance after being validated in a clinical study. Last month, Apple said the average difference in weekly measurements between the Apple Watch and an FDA-cleared reference device was less than one percent.

The AFib History feature could prove useful when a patient receives an ablation treatment for chronic atrial fibrillation, but the treatment is unsuccessful at first attempt and the patient continues to experience atrial fibrillation.

Upon previewing ‌watchOS 9‌, Apple said that AFib History is not currently approved in all countries or regions, so availability of the feature will likely be limited at launch. That being said, there is still time for other regulatory authorities to approve AFib History before the official release of ‌watchOS 9‌ later this year.