This is an app that has been jointly developed by the Department of Primary Care Health Sciences ( http://www.primarycare.ox.ac.uk ), the Institute of Biomedical Engineering in Oxford ( http://www.ibme.ox.ac.uk ) and a spin-out company, t+ Medical.
The app helps people with type 2 diabetes who take tablets to control their blood glucose levels. Sometimes, if blood glucose levels are too high, the number of tablets which they take will have to be increased. Their GP would normally prescribe these changes at clinic visits over a period of several months. Our app allows patients to agree a set of treatment steps with their GP and diabetes nurse (the “titration schedule”), and to use a Bluetooth-enabled blood glucose meter to measure their fasting glucose levels at home. The meter sends these readings to the app, which helps the person decide if their glucose readings are high and if they should therefore increase the number of tablets being taken, according to the titration schedule. Screenshots from the app can be seen at (http://www.ibme.ox.ac.uk/bsp/healthcare-apps). The readings and the electronic patient diaries are automatically transmitted to a secure website for the diabetes nurse to review, if needed. The app has been tested in a pilot study with GP Practices in the Thames Valley, as part of a telehealth research programme in the NIHR Biomedical Research Centre in Oxford.
We have used a similar app to help patients using insulin for their type 2 diabetes to adjust the dose they inject, and have found this has helped to control their glucose levels. The results of the clinical study in which this app was evaluated have been published in scientific journals: “Implementation of telehealth support for patients with type 2 diabetes using insulin treatment: an exploratory study”, Informatics in Primary Care, 2009, volume 17, pages 47-53 and “Telemedicine-supported insulin optimisation in primary care”, Journal of Telemedicine and Telecare, 2010, volume 16, pages 433–440. Copies of these papers are available at http://www.ibme.ox.ac.uk/bsp/research/healthcare-apps/ .