Mobile diabetes intervention reduced HbA1c 2 percentage points more than standard of care

By Jonah Comstock
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In late 2014, MobiHealthNews reported that Atlanta-based diabetes management company Rimidi was piloting its software in a 129-patient RCT with Desert Oasis Healthcare, part of Heritage California ACO, a pioneer ACO. Now the company has made public some of the preliminary results from the ongoing study, showing that patients who used Rimidi’s intervention dropped their HbA1c by 2 percentage points more than standard treatments and their total cholesterol by 50 mg/dL more than standard treatments.

In Rimidi’s Diabetes+Me system, patients are supplied with a mobile app that can be paired with connected glucometers like those from Telcare and iHealth. In addition to tracking their glucose readings, patients can use the app to track other health metrics like diet, exercise, and stress, and also to see educational material about diabetes (through a partnership with diabetes website and social network dLife) and even their clinician's notes -- not notes entered directly into the EHR, but notes entered specially into the platform's backend.

Once the data is in the system, doctors can use it to model different treatment options and interventions, such as predicting the effect of a new medication, and can share all of those insights with the patient. Doctors can decide whether a medication change is necessary, or whether a behavioral intervention like a change in diet or exercise is more appropriate.

The study grouped patients into three arms of 43, one with primary care treatment, one with the standard of care including a pharmacist intervention, and one with the standard of care, the pharmacist intervention, and the Diabetes+Me software tool.

The average HbA1c drop for the Rimidi arm was 5.32 percent at 12 weeks, compared to an average decrease of 3.04 percent in the standard treatment group. The average drop in total cholesterol for the Rimidi group was 88.5 mg/dL compared to 37.25 mg/dL in the standard treatment.

“This demonstrates that not only will Rimidi offer assistance in regulating diabetes management, it will also aid in managing cholesterol control, depicting the versatility of a Diabetes Decision (Support) Software,” study authors wrote, adding that the results are “preliminary” and represent “an interesting and hopeful trend in favor of the Diabetes+Me tool.”

The authors also related that preliminary patient feedback shows use of the tool led to increased confidence in the patient’s plan and improved health engagement.