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Nutrition Informatics Blog

mHealth Tools for American Diabetes Month

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Perhaps it wasn’t a coincidence I met Jonathan Wald, MPH, MD at the AMIA2012 Annual Symposium this week; I had just received the nudge to blog for American Diabetes Month from Jessica Larson, the DC Policy Office Strategic Communications Manager.  We had previously met at a health IT event in DC and shared lunch with another colleague on outside--on a beautiful day.  Jonathan is the Director of Patient-Centered Technologies in the Center for the Advancement of Health IT at RTI . I searched out his short presentation at AMIA due to the name: Quantified Self (QS).  If you have read much in QS, it is a fascinating area of patient monitoring technology which provides patients/consumers real time feedback on their own body.  In this case, Jonathans presentation was personal.  He explained how he spent the past three years monitoring his own blood sugar via a monitor called the Freestyle Navigator, which is now evolved to the FreeStyle Insulinx product. In Jonathan’s case, he has an insulin pump which he can use in conjunction with the blood sugar monitor to monitor and control his blood sugar.  This allows direct observation of the glycemic effect of foods, response of exercise and other factors which impact his glucose control.  This product in particular is a touch screen meter that allows you to log insulin doses and blood glucose levels with a few taps. Similar technologies are now being piloted in hospitals for better management of critical care glucose levels.  This is great example of how “mhealth” or mobile technologies can help us better adapt to personal conditions. While this is not yet in widespread use, it is one great example of the capabilities of health care technologies that we need to learn more about.   What are YOUR patients using for diabetes management?

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