8 Studies that Prove the Value of Remote Monitoring for Diabetes

The mHealth industry is growing fast and for good reason. Mobile technology keeps getting better everyday. Did you know there are almost as many cellphone subscriptions (6.8 billion) as there are people on this earth (seven billion)?! With all of this information at their fingertips, people want more control and visibility to their health data. This constantly evolving, connected world provides a unique opportunity for healthcare to reach people around the world, no matter where they are.

For people with diabetes, this means greater access to care and real-time insights that provide feedback on everything from when their medications are working to how diet and exercise can make a huge difference. Healthcare professionals are also increasingly adopting mHealth technology to more easily converse with their patients outside of the clinic, receive on-demand patient data, and for informative diagnostics that lead to improvements in care for individuals and their entire patient population. When mHealth apps are designed for mobile with patients and providers in mind, they can deliver great value to the user.

But is mHealth really making an impact? Here are 8 studies that show how much remote monitoring can improve outcomes and reduce costs if they were used by the over 350 million people in the world with diabetes:

(1) The Veterans Administration (VA) introduced a national home telehealth program known as Care Coordination/Home Telehealth (CCHT) between 2003 and 2007. Among the 445 veterans with type 2 diabetes enrolled, 50% saw a decrease in number of hospitalizations and an 11% decrease in emergency room visits. Read more here.

(2) The Diabetes Education and Telecare Demonstration Project (IdeaTel) showed that people with diabetes who received intensive nurse case management via remote patient monitoring had a reduction in HbA1c from 8.4 to 7.4 percent, with improvements in HbA1c, LDL-cholesterol and BP sustained over five years. Read more here.

(3) The Health Buddy Program, a telehealth care-coordination program for Medicare beneficiaries showed significant savings among patients with a 7.7-13.3% cost reduction per beneficiary per quarter. Read more here.

(4) The UK Department of Health Whole System Demonstrator Program was launched in May 2008 and was the largest randomized control trial for telehealth involving 6,191 patients and 238 physicians. The results showed a 20% reduction in emergency room visits and an 45% reduction in mortality rates. Read more here.

(5) The HouseCalls Diabetes Telehealth Program included weekly telephone education and counseling based on the patients prescribed treatment plan with no face-to-face contact. Results from that study showed an HbA1c drop of -1.8%, which was clinically significant. Read more here.

(6) The UK Prospective Diabetes Study (UKPDS) found that a 1% reduction in HbA1c is associated with a 5% reduction in macro-vascular endpoints, 18% reduction in heart attacks, and 17% reduction in all-cause mortality Read more here.

(7) In a study that looked at the impact of medication adherence on hospitalization and healthcare cost, it found that better medication adherence results in a net savings of $1,074 per patient. Read more here.

(8) In a study by ActiveCare that deployed mHealth glucose monitors combined with a call center-based diabetes management program, they found that non-compliant diabetes patients had $3,384 more in medical costs/year than those who were at least partially competent. Read more here.

Sidhtara Tep

Sidhtara is a Marketing Manager at Glooko. She's interested in the intersection of technology and healthcare and how together, they can bring positive and sustainable change to people's lives.