“By arming care providers with up-to-date information, families are no longer ‘flying in the dark’ with their diabetes care between appointments,” Deneen Vojta, M.D., executive vice president of research and development at UnitedHealth Group, said. “With today’s technology, healthcare professionals can provide deeply informed, high-quality care, as frequently as needed. This detailed, near-real-time care will help patients in both the short term and the long term.”
Indeed, as UnitedHealth Group officials noted, patients with T1D test their blood sugar levels several times a day and adjust their insulin dosage based on the results. However, patients meet typically with an endocrinologist only about four times per year, reviewing data retroactively and after treatment decisions may have been made. As such, this is where remote monitoring has the potential to make intervention from a health professional and subsequent adjustments more convenient, effective and efficient, and even reduce the frequency and length of clinical visits without sacrificing care.
“Innovations in diabetes technology and communications pathways allow patients to partner with their providers in Type 1 diabetes management like never before,” said Aylin Altan, senior vice president of research at OptumLabs, part of UnitedHealth Group, who analyzed the project data, and who has lived with Type 1 diabetes for more than 40 years. “If we can find a way to make maximum use of technology and collaborative decision-making with care providers, the standard of care for young patients with Type 1 diabetes will better position them to manage the disease through adulthood.”