Assistant Editor, Safety & Health Practitioner

September 26, 2019

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Apple Watch Series 5: Employee health benefits of new Apple Watch

The new Apple Watch Series 5 includes health features that can be beneficial for employees and their employers.

The new features on the Series 5 can assist in increasing the health of many employees on their daily work routine and decrease the safety risks. Construction workers, lone worker and employees that suffer with heart conditions, can all benefit from its new features.

Noise app for construction workers

Given that noise levels can reach 120db (decibels) at construction sites, it is important for employers to monitor the ambient noise around to decide if workers require ear protection, which is liable under the Control of Noise at Work Regulations 2005.

The new Apple Watch has a Noise app which uses the a microphone to measure sound and detects noise levels that can be hazardous, this can be helpful for construction site employers, aircraft engineers and security guards working at loud venues such as concerts, as it will help them monitor sound and take appropriate precautions to avoid any damage.

Fall detection for lone workers

The Apple Watch Series 5 also conrains a fall detection feature. While wearing the watch, it can detect if someone has had a hard fall, and then it will sound an alarm and display an alert. If the person is unresponsive to the alerts, or if the watch does not detect any movements within a 30 second countdown, it will act by contacting emergency services and a pre-assigned emergency contact.

apple watch emergancy contactRecently, the watch detected that a mountain biker had a “hard fall” and did not respond to notification alerts from the watch. The smart apple device immediately sent a text message to the man’s emergency contact, his son, and contacted emergency services with a map location to where he had the fall. The man regained consciousness when he woke up in hospital.

Preventing heart attacks at work

According to the British Heart Foundation, there are around 7.4 million people living with heart and circulatory disease in the UK, with 3.9 million of them being men and the other 3.5 million being women.

There are many risk factors in the workplace that can affect an employee with heart problems.

By having electrodes at the back of the watch and in its digital crown, the Apple Watch can conduct and electrocardiogram (ECG) test and monitor heart rates.

It will tell an employee if their heart is in an average sinus rhythm, or if it is experiencing atrial fibrillation (AFib). AFib is an abnormal heart rhythm that needs to be brought to your doctor’s attention because it can cause life-threatening conditions, such as stroke or heart failure. If this happens in a workplace, the employee will also be able to notify employers for immediate medical help.

Apple Watch Series 5 health & safety features

Additional features include a compass, which works with Apple Maps and other location apps to automatically orientate correctly, making navigation easier, and the ability to allow people to track their menstrual cycles and see fertility windows.

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Philip Douglas
Philip Douglas
1 year ago

The apple watch could always be considered as business equipment. However, considering its health and safety features it could also be seen as safety equipment. Given this, perhaps the purchase could be considered a tax deductible business expense?