The University of Alabama at Birmingham (UAB) Department of Family and Community Medicine Vice Chair for Research collaborated with the University of Mississippi Medical Center to develop a sustainable type 2 diabetes care program that makes use of remote patient monitoring (RPM) techniques.
Type 2 diabetes is a fairly widespread disease in the US that affects a large percentage of the population negatively in terms of their health. Over 37 million Americans (roughly 10% of the population), according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), suffer from this illness.
The highest incidence of type 2 diabetes are seen in the Deep South, frequently as a result of cardiovascular illness and chronic renal disease caused by diabetes. Due to racial health disparities and other factors, Black Americans are disproportionately afflicted by this disease due to racial and economic inequality.
The upcoming trial, known as the Food Delivery, Remote Monitoring, and Coaching-Enhanced Education for Optimized Diabetes Management (FREEDOM), would use social determinants of health-focused intervention components. HbA1C levels determined at baseline, at the conclusion of the six-month intervention period, and 12 months into the trial serve as the primary outcome measures.
Vice Chair for Research Tapan Mehta, Ph.D. commented on the study, issuing the following statement: “Our study will leverage multi-health care system and health care system-industry partnerships to promote health equity and to improve diabetes outcomes in socially vulnerable Black adults living in the Deep South…To our knowledge, this is the first optimization trial that brings three intervention components — health coaching, remote patient monitoring and food box delivery — together to identify the most sustainable intervention package. This study is important and will inform health systems as leaders consider population health management and value-based care and pilot some of these intervention components in isolation.”
304 Black adults with type 2 diabetes, associated cardiovascular disease, and chronic renal disease will initially participate in the trial. Each patient will be referred to diabetic self-management education and support programs and have access to one or more interventions, such as interactive group courses, one-on-one virtual assistance, and digital health coaching with an evidence-based curriculum. Participants will also take part in RPM, which provides guidelines for checking blood sugar levels four times each day. With diabetes in mind, the healthcare sector has become more interested in digital solutions for managing chronic diseases.