The heart is a major health-category at CES 2024, from wristband wearable tech to remote health monitoring devices enabling cardiovascular hospital-to-home care.

Abbott, one of the first life science companies to exhibit at CES back in 2022, announced the HeartMates program here at #CES2024 today as part of a panel titled Ahead of the Game: Revolutionizing Athlete Safety with Emerging Health Tech.

I have both professional and personal interests in athlete safety, having two nephews who have been involved in acute sports injury and brain health.

The panel discussion featured the latest research findings on injury prevention and recovery, with examples of how technology is addressing the challenge of identifying specific injuries and treating them. The panel was a wonderful mix of clinician-experts making a difference for player health with the NBA, Real Madrid (football/soccer), and the Chicago Bears and Chicago Blackhawks, along with representatives from Abbott in neuroscience and medical affairs.

The highlight for me was a very joyous Damar Hamlin who Abbott has recruited as Ambassador/spokesperson — one so perfectly chosen for this program — for HeartMates. Check out the video clipped here. The program brings together a community of patients dealing with cardiovascular disease, a peer-to-peer network across generations and demographics. As Dr. Nadim Geloo, with Abbott’s Cardiovascular Care Medical Affairs team, shares at the conclusion of the video, “Living longer is important. So is living better.”

In full disclosure, I am a Damar Hamlin fan-girl and an advocate of social networks for health — but Abbott is not a client of mine. This is shared as a best-practice example of how a highly-regulated life science company can get involved in patient social networks and bolster health literacy, access, and empathy for people’s health and community benefit.