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Eko Devices

The Food and Drug Administration has cleared Eko Devices to sell a new product called DUO — a device that digitally combines a stethoscope and electrocardiogram.

How DUO works: Patients hold the handheld device near their heart, and doctors can monitor the heart sounds and images from afar in real time. Doctors can buy a DUO for $350 and distribute them to patients free of charge as part of an outpatient program, said Jason Bellet, co-founder of Eko Devices. Patients can also get the device through a doctor's prescription.

Why it matters: Skepticism is warranted for new health tech gadgets. But it could fill a need since doctors want to prevent hospital readmissions (partially due to government incentives). This kind of remote technology "enables us to know which patients are ill and need immediate attention versus those who are stable and can continue therapy at home," said Dr. Ami Bhatt, director of outpatient cardiology at Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston.

Go deeper

Caitlin Owens, author of Vitals
3 hours ago - Health

Pfizer CEO feels "liberated" after taking COVID vaccine

Pfizer CEO Albert Bourla. Photo: "Axios on HBO"

Pfizer CEO Albert Bourla tells "Axios on HBO" that he recently received his first of two doses of the company's coronavirus vaccine.

Why it matters: Bourla told CNBC in December that company polling found that one of the most effective ways to increase confidence in the vaccine was to have the CEO take it.

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Ripple CEO: SEC lawsuit is "bad for crypto" in the U.S.

Ripple CEO Brad Garlinghouse tells "Axios on HBO" that if his company loses a lawsuit brought by U.S. regulators, it would put the country at a competitive disadvantage when it comes to cryptocurrencies.

Between the lines: The SEC in December sued Ripple, and Garlinghouse personally, for allegedly selling over $1.3 billion in unregistered securities. Ripple's response is that its cryptocurrency, called XRP, didn't require registration because it's an asset rather than a security.

Caitlin Owens, author of Vitals
3 hours ago - Health

Pfizer CEO: "It will be terrible" if COVID-19 vaccine prices limit access

Pfizer CEO Albert Bourla told "Axios on HBO" that it "will be terrible for society" if the price of coronavirus vaccines ever prohibits some people from taking them.

Why it matters: Widespread uptake of the vaccine — which might require annual booster shots — will reduce the risk of the virus continuing to spread and mutate, but it's unclear who will pay for future shots or how much they'll cost.