A Type 2 diabetes app, that has received nearly £1 million in funding over three years, will be rolled out in clinical commissioning groups across England.
Changing Health, a self management app for the condition, will be used in CCGs in Waltham Forest, Central London, West London, South Manchester and a West Midlands vanguard this month.
Mike Trenell, co-founder and chief scientific officer at Changing Health, said it was clear that “if you can help somebody manage their weight, move more, eat better, you can reverse Type 2 diabetes, and if you’re at risk of Type 2 diabetes you can prevent it”.
The app, which can be used on a smartphone or tablet, provide patients with coaching and exercise programmes, based on well grounded research, and provides access to a professional coach.
It can track your weight, food and exercise, and also provide animations, games and articles to support self-management.
Trenell said reports from the app can also be fed directly back into the patient’s GP record.
“We have a way to link directly with the primary care record which is critical.”
Trenell said that “Type 2 diabetes has a striking affect on an individual’s quality of life, but also it has financial implications”.
In a statement, John Grumitt, Changing Health chief executive said, that the condition “accounts for 10 per cent (£11.6bn) of the annual NHS budget”.
The app was developed out of research at Newcastle University and Newcastle NHS Foundation Trust. It was funded by the National Institute for Health Research and the Medical Research Council, alongside charities.
Trenell anticipates the app will have 10,000 users by end of 2017 in both the UK and internationally.
Using wearables to help with diabetes is not a new idea.
In June 2016, Digital Health News reported on the Diabetes Digital Coach, one of the seven test beds announced by NHS England in January.
The plan was to roll out apps and wearables to 12,000 people in the West of England in 2016.
In London, King’s Health Partners and wearable technology company Buddi, announced a collaboration in August last year to pilot a wearable and “motivational” mobile app to promote exercise and healthy eating.