Mobile health technology improves self-management of diabetics

China has the largest number of people with type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM) in the world - 110 million people – and this number is expected to rise. In order to better help people with T2DM, The George Institute China is undertaking a ‘Mobile Health Technology Platform’ to help family health promoters in their management of people with diabetes. 

The ‘SMARTHealth Diabetes’ is a cooperation with Beijing University of Aeronautics and Astronautics, the School of Public Health at Hebei Medical University, Shijiazhuang Center for Diseases Control (CDC), Yuhua Community Management Center, Yuhua Health and Family Planning Bureau and Luquan CDC of Shijiazhuang. The project aims to apply mobile health technology to assist community doctors and family health promoters in their management of people with T2DM. The project, with T2DM at the forefront, also aims to explore an innovative service mode for chronic disease management which is suitable for the region, ultimately enhancing the long-term health of people with T2DM to reduce complications from this condition.

Since its official launch in September 2017, the project has included more than 2,000 people with T2DM, trained more than 40 grassroots doctors from various community health service stations and village clinics, practicing the management mode of combining family health promoters with mobile medical care.

On 26 October, 2018, the mid-term summary meeting of the SMARTHealth Diabetes Project was held in Luquan District, Shijiazhuang.  A wide range of people participated: community directors and 20 community doctors from Yuhua, 13 persons in charge from the township health clinic, and 20 village doctors and investigators from health stations in Luquan District.

At the beginning of the meeting, Professor Puhong Zhang, Associate Director of The George Institute China, Professor Yuxia Ma, Vice-President of School of Public Health at Hebei Medical University, Xinyan Ma, Director of Shijiazhuang Center for Chronic Diseases Control, Zhiguo Xing & Donghui Zhang, Director and Deputy Director of Yuhua Community Health Service Management Center, Zhenjie Rong, Deputy Director of Yuhua Health and Family Planning Bureau, and Yaosen Zhang, Deputy Director of Luquan CDC, extended a warm welcome to all the participants, and expressed sincere gratitude to what they have accomplished over the past year. Community representatives, Dr. Hui Ju from Jinmasan Community and Dr. Shibo Yang from Ershilipu Community in Yuhua District, and Dr. Pengbin Jia from Zhongluoling Village and Dr. Yu Chen from Pingbei Village in Luquan District, won the outstanding representatives awards, and shared their experience.

Later, researchers from the Diabetes Research team of The George Institute China shared the latest knowledge about T2DM and mobile health, and elaborated and answered questions on the new functions of SMARTHealth Diabetes APP.

“Through the development of mobile technology and the popularity of mobile devices, we hope to explore the management mode of combining family health promoters and mobile medical care, so as to better help people with diabetes to manage diseases and reduce the burden of diabetes.” said Professor Puhong Zhang.