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Doctors using baby monitors in fight against COVID-19

HOUSTON – A tool for new parents is now being used by doctors in the fight against the coronavirus.

Baby monitors can be a comfort or added stress to new parents. There’s a variety of baby monitors for parents to choose from, such as a monitor that goes on the baby, often the foot, and connect to the wireless cameras and monitors, which will alert the parents if a baby’s breathing is irregular.

The hope is that such baby monitors will help parents monitor their children in their sleep and help eliminate Sudden Infant Death Syndrome.

Now, the company said doctors are trying them out in the fight against coronavirus since, in theory, a patient in an isolated room could wear this without exposing a nurse or caregiver.

“Since our device is contactless and real-time breathing, high accuracy to see the breathing patterns, we started to get a lot of hospitals reaching out," said Miku Co-founder Cold Seman. “Elderly care facilities and any other facility was looking for any kind of equipment that could help them.”

Local doctors said they have not used these but prefer to stick with the cheaper gold standard to measure oxygen — a pulse oximeter.

“If you feel like ‘I cannot catch my breath,’ it’s time to get to the hospital,” said Dr. Peter Bigler, chief medical officer at Baylor St. Lukes Medical Group.

It’s another tool that’s been tough to come by during the pandemic but they’re starting to come back. They are typically available at pharmacies or online, if you get coronavirus, you can measure oxygen from home and doctors say it can help if you know the reading when you call their office.