The IEEE has released a new standard aimed at helping manufacturers and healthcare providers evaluate wearable, cuffless devices for measuring blood pressure.

Published on August 27, IEEE Standard 1708 is applicable to all types of wearable, cuffless bp devices, regardless of their mode of operation (measuring short-term, long-term, snapshot, continuous, or beat-to-beat blood pressure or blood-pressure variability). The standard provides guidelines for manufacturers to qualify and validate their technology, potential purchasers or users to evaluate and select products, and healthcare professionals to accurately calibrate devices.

“Existing standards for evaluating blood pressure meters were created for the traditional devices that utilize cuffs and typically capture ‘snapshot’ measurements of blood pressure. Those standards do not address all aspects needed for the emerging wearable devices,” Yuanting Zhang said. Zhang is chair of the IEEE 1708 working group, IEEE Engineering in Medicine and Biology Society Fellow, director of Key Lab for Health Informatics of Chinese Academy of Sciences, and director of Joint Research Center for Biomedical Engineering at The Chinese University of Hong Kong.

According to the association, the new standard is “an important addition to the growing framework of IEEE e-health standards designed to support life-saving capabilities across traditional medical devices and leading-edge personal health devices alike.”