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JMIR Diabetes

Emerging Technologies, Medical Devices, Apps, Sensors, and Informatics to Help People with Diabetes.


Journal Description

JMIR Diabetes (JD) is a new sister journal of JMIR (the leading open-access journal in health informatics (Impact Factor 2016: 5.175), focusing on technologies, medical devices, apps, engineering, informatics and patient education for diabetes prevention, self-management, care, and cure, to help people with diabetes. As open access journal we are read by clinicians and patients alike and have (as all JMIR journals) a focus on readable and applied science reporting the design and evaluation of health innovations and emerging technologies, as well as on diabetes epidemiology. We publish original research, viewpoints, and reviews (both literature reviews and medical device/technology/app reviews) covering for example wearable devices and trackers, mobile apps, glucose monitoring (including emerging technologies such as Google contact lens), medical devices for insulin and metabolic peptide delivery, closed loop systems and artificial pancreas, telemedicine, web-based diabetes education and elearning, innovations for patient self-management and "quantified self", diabetes-specific EHR improvements, clinical or consumer-focused software, diabetes epidemiology and surveillance, crowdsourcing and quantified self-based research data, new sensors and actuators to be applied to diabetes.


Recent Articles:

  • A person interacting with a digital therapeutic to report biometrics and behaviors related to the treatment of their diabetes (montage). Source: The Authors /; Copyright: The Authors; URL:; License: Creative Commons Attribution (CC-BY).

    Change in Glycemic Control With Use of a Digital Therapeutic in Adults With Type 2 Diabetes: Cohort Study


    Background: Intensive lifestyle change can treat and even reverse type 2 diabetes. Digital therapeutics have the potential to deliver lifestyle as medicine for diabetes at scale. Objective: This 12-week study investigates the effects of a novel digital therapeutic, FareWell, on hemoglobin A1c (HbA1c) and diabetes medication use. Methods: Adults with type 2 diabetes and a mobile phone were recruited throughout the United States using Facebook advertisements. The intervention aim was to effect a sustainable shift to a plant-based dietary pattern and regular exercise by advancing culinary literacy and lifestyle skill acquisition. The intervention was delivered by an app paired with specialized human support, also delivered digitally. Health coaching was provided every 2 weeks by telephone, and a clinical team was available for participants requiring additional support. Participants self-reported current medications and HbA1c at the beginning and end of the 12-week program. Self-efficacy related to managing diabetes and maintaining dietary changes was assessed via survey. Engagement was recorded automatically through the app. Results: We enrolled 118 participants with a baseline HbA1c >6.5%. Participants were 81.4% female (96/118) and resided in 38 US states with a mean age of 50.7 (SD 9.4) years, baseline body mass index of 38.1 (SD 8.8) kg/m2, and baseline HbA1c of 8.1% (SD 1.6). At 12 weeks, 86.2% (94/109) of participants were still using the app. Mean change in HbA1c was –0.8% (97/101, SD 1.3, P<.001) for those reporting end-study data. For participants with a baseline HbA1c >7.0% who did not change medications midstudy, HbA1c change was –1.1% (67/69, SD 1.4, P<.001). The proportion of participants with an end-study HbA1c <6.5% was 28% (22/97). After completion of the intervention, 17% (16/97) of participants reported a decrease in diabetic medication while 8% (8/97) reported an increase. A total of 57% (55/97) of participants achieved a composite outcome of reducing HbA1c, reducing diabetic medication use, or both; 92% (90/98) reported greater confidence in their ability to manage their diabetes compared to before the program, and 91% (89/98) reported greater confidence in their ability to maintain a healthy dietary pattern. Participants engaged with the app an average of 4.3 times per day. We observed a significantly greater decrease in HbA1c among participants in the highest tertile of app engagement compared to those in the lowest tertile of app engagement (P=.03). Conclusions: Clinically meaningful reductions in HbA1c were observed with use of the FareWell digital therapeutic. Greater glycemic control was observed with increasing app engagement. Engagement and retention were both high in this widely distributed sample.

  • Use of Glooko (montage). Source: The Authors /; Copyright: JMIR Publications; URL:; License: Creative Commons Attribution (CC-BY).

    Use of a Mobile App to Facilitate Blood Glucose Monitoring in Adolescents With Type 1 Diabetes: Single-Subject Nonrandomized Clinical Trial


    Background: Cloud-based glucose monitoring programs allow users with diabetes to wirelessly synchronize their glucometers to their mobile phones. They also provide visualization and remote access of their data through its mobile app. There have been very few studies evaluating their effectiveness in managing diabetes among adolescents with type 1 diabetes (T1D). Objective: The purpose of this study was to assess the feasibility of using a mobile app to improve daily average blood glucose (BG) levels and increase BG monitoring frequency. Methods: We used an ABA single-subject prospective study design. We recruited five participants aged 13 to 17 years with uncontrolled T1D, glycated hemoglobin A1c 9.0%-10.7%, self-monitoring behavior of ≤5 checks/day, and on multiple daily insulin injections. The study consisted of 4-week intervals of three phases: (1) phase A: usual glucose monitoring log (fax); (2) phase B: mobile app; and (3) phase A': second phase A. A certified diabetes educator and endocrinologist reviewed logs and provided recommendations weekly. Data were analyzed using a quasi-Poisson model to adjust for overdispersion among individual participants, and a generalized estimating equation model for overall intervention effect in aggregate. Results: For mean daily BG (mg/dL) levels, participant 1 had decreased values on the mobile app (298 to 281, P=.03) and maintained in phase A'. Participant 4 had an increase in mean daily BG in phase A' (175 to 185, P=.01), whereas participant 5 had a decrease in mean daily BG in phase A' (314 to 211, P=.04). For daily monitoring (checks/day), participant 3 increased in phase B (4.6 to 8.3, P=.01) and maintained in phase A'. Participant 5 also had increased daily monitoring at each phase (2.1 to 2.4, P=.01; 2.4 to 3.4, P=.02). For the five participants combined, the overall mean BG and BG checks per day in phase A were mean 254.8 (SD 99.2) and mean 3.6 (SD 2.0), respectively, mean 223.1 (SD 95.7) and mean 4.5 (SD 3.0) in phase B, and mean 197.5 (SD 81.3) and mean 3.7 (SD 2.1) in phase A'. Compared to phase A, mean glucose levels declined during phase B and remained lower during phase A' (P=.002). There was no overall change in BG checks by phase (P=.25). However, mean BG levels negatively correlated with daily BG checks (r=–.47, P<.001). Although all participants had positive opinions about the app, its utilization was highly variable. Conclusions: We demonstrated modest feasibility of adolescents with uncontrolled T1D utilizing a glucose monitoring mobile app. Further study is needed to better determine its effects on BG level and monitoring frequency. Psychosocial factors and motivational barriers likely influence adoption and continuous use of technology for diabetes management.

  • Source:; Copyright: Tsippendale; URL:; License: Public Domain (CC0).

    An Interactive Simulation to Change Outcome Expectancies and Intentions in Adults With Type 2 Diabetes: Within-Subjects Experiment


    Background: Computerized simulations are underutilized to educate or motivate patients with chronic disease. Objective: The aim of this study was to test the efficacy of an interactive, personalized simulation that demonstrates the acute effect of physical activity on blood glucose. Our goal was to test its effects on physical activity-related outcome expectancies and behavioral intentions among adults with type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM). Methods: In this within-subjects experiment, potential participants were emailed a link to the study website and directed through 7 tasks: (1) consent; (2) demographics, baseline intentions, and self-reported walking; (3) orientation to the diurnal glucose curve; (4) baseline outcome expectancy, measured by a novel drawing task in which participants use their mouse to draw the expected difference in the diurnal glucose curve if they had walked; (5) interactive simulation; (6) postsimulation outcome expectancy measured by a second drawing task; and (7) final measures of intentions and impressions of the website. To test our primary hypothesis that participants’ outcome expectancies regarding walking would shift toward the outcome presented in the interactive simulation, we used a paired t test to compare the difference of differences between the change in area under the curve in the simulation and participants’ two drawings. To test whether intentions to walk increased, we used paired t tests. To assess the intervention’s usability, we collected both quantitative and qualitative data on participants’ perceptions of the drawing tasks and simulation. Results: A total of 2019 individuals visited the website and 1335 (566 males, 765 females, and 4 others) provided complete data. Participants were largely late middle-aged (mean=59.8 years; standard deviation=10.5), female 56.55% (755/1335), Caucasian 77.45% (1034/1335), lower income 64.04% (855/1335) t1334=3.4, P ≤.001). Our second hypothesis, that participants’ intentions to walk in the coming week would increase, was also supported; general intention (mean difference=0.31/7, t1001=10.8, P<.001) and minutes of walking last week versus planned for coming week (mean difference=33.5 min, t1334=13.2, P<.001) both increased. Finally, an examination of qualitative feedback and drawing task data suggested that some participants had difficulty understanding the website. This led to a post-hoc subset analysis. In this analysis, effects for our hypothesis regarding outcome expectancies were markedly stronger, suggesting that further work is needed to determine moderators of the efficacy of this simulation. Conclusions: A novel interactive simulation is efficacious in changing the outcome expectancies and behavioral intentions of adults with T2DM. We discuss applications of our results to the design of mobile health (mHealth) interventions.

  • OneTouch Select Plus Simple glucose meter. Source: Image created by the Authors; Copyright: The Authors; URL:; License: Creative Commons Attribution (CC-BY).

    Health Care Professionals’ Clinical Perspectives on Glycemic Control and Satisfaction With a New Blood Glucose Meter With a Color Range Indicator: Online...


    Background: We previously demonstrated in patients with diabetes that displaying blood glucose results in association with color improved their ability to interpret glucose results. Objective: The objective of this study was to investigate the perceptions of health care professionals (HCPs) in specific countries about the value of color on a new glucose meter and to determine if HCP perspectives among countries differ on the value of this approach in clinical practice. Methods: A total of 180 HCPs, including 105 endocrinologists, 34 primary care physicians, 25 diabetes educators, and 16 pharmacists, were recruited from India (n=50), Russia (n=50), China (n=50), and the United States (n=30). These HCPs experienced the OneTouch Select Plus Simple glucose meter online from their own office computer using interactive demonstrations (webpages, meter simulator, and video clips). After providing demographic and current clinical practice insights, HCPs responded to questions about the utility of the color-enhanced glucose meter. Results: Mean age and years in their current professional role for the 180 HCPs was 41.3 (SD 8.1) and 13.3 (SD 6.8) years for endocrinologists, 41.3 (SD 8.3) and 14.1 (SD 6.8) years for primary care physicians, 37.5 (SD 8.7) and 12.7 (SD 6.8) years for diabetes educators, and 35.9 (SD 5.3) and 9.5 (SD 5.2) years for pharmacists. In all, 88% (44/50) of Russian and 83% (25/30) of American HCPs said their patients find it easy to recognize low, in-range, or high blood glucose results compared to 56% (28/50) of HCPs in China and 42% (21/50) in India. Regardless of country, HCPs had less confidence that their patients act on blood glucose results with 52% (26/50) in Russia, 63% (19/30) in the United States, 60% (30/50) in China, and 40% (20/50) in India responding positively. During the interactive online meter experience, HCPs from all countries responded positively to questions about a meter with color features. After reflecting on the value of this meter, most HCPs strongly agreed or agreed their patients would be more inclined to act on results using a meter with color features (Russia: 92%, 46/50; United States: 70%, 21/30; China: 98%, 49/50; India: 94%, 47/50). They also said that color was particularly useful for patients with lower numeracy or education who may struggle with interpreting results (Russia: 98%, 49/50; United States: 77%, 23/30; China: 100%, 50/50; India: 82%, 41/50). Conclusions: This multicountry online study provides evidence that HCPs had high overall satisfaction with the OneTouch Select Plus glucose meter, which uses color-coded information to assist patients with interpreting blood glucose results. This may be especially helpful in patient populations with low numeracy or literacy and limited access to health care and direct interaction with HCPs.

  • Facebook page of PilAm Go4Health (montage). Source: University of California San Francisco /; Copyright: JMIR Publications; URL:; License: Creative Commons Attribution (CC-BY).

    A Feasible and Efficacious Mobile-Phone Based Lifestyle Intervention for Filipino Americans with Type 2 Diabetes: Randomized Controlled Trial


    Background: Filipino Americans have a high prevalence of obesity, type 2 diabetes (T2D), and cardiovascular disease compared with other Asian American subgroups and non-Hispanic whites. Mobile health (mHealth) weight loss interventions can reduce chronic disease risks, but these are untested in Filipino Americans with T2D. Objective: The objective of this study was to assess feasibility and potential efficacy of a pilot, randomized controlled trial (RCT) of a culturally adapted mHealth weight loss lifestyle intervention (Pilipino Americans Go4Health [PilAm Go4Health]) for overweight Filipino Americans with T2D. Methods: This was a 2-arm pilot RCT of the 3-month PilAm Go4Health intervention (phase 1) with an active waitlist control and 3-month follow-up (phase 2). The waitlist control received the PilAm Go4Health in phase 2, whereas the intervention group transitioned to the 3-month follow-up. PilAm Go4Health incorporated a Fitbit accelerometer, mobile app with diary for health behavior tracking (steps, food/calories, and weight), and social media (Facebook) for virtual social support, including 7 in-person monthly meetings. Filipino American adults ≥18 years with T2D were recruited from Northern California. Feasibility was measured by rates of recruitment, engagement, and retention. Multilevel regression analyses assessed within and between group differences for the secondary outcome of percent weight change and other outcomes of weight (kg), body mass index (BMI), waist circumference, fasting plasma glucose, HbA1c, and steps. Results: A total of 45 Filipino American adults were enrolled and randomized. Mean age was 58 (SD 10) years, 62% (28/45) were women, and mean BMI was 30.1 (SD 4.6). Participant retention and study completion were 100%, with both the intervention and waitlist group achieving near-perfect attendance at all 7 intervention office visits. Groups receiving the PilAm Go4Health in phase 1 (intervention group) and phase 2 (waitlist group) had significantly greater weight loss, −2.6% (−3.9 to −1.4) and −3.3% (−1.8 to −4.8), respectively, compared with the nonintervention group, resulting in a moderate to small effect sizes (d=0.53 and 0.37, respectively). In phase 1, 18% (4/22) of the intervention group achieved a 5% weight loss, whereas 82% (18/22) maintained or lost 2% to 5% of their weight and continued to maintain this weight loss in the 3-month follow-up. Other health outcomes, including waist circumference, BMI, and step counts, improved when each arm received the PilAm Go4Health, but the fasting glucose and HbA1c outcomes were mixed. Conclusions: The PilAm Go4Health was feasible and demonstrated potential efficacy in reducing diabetes risks in overweight Filipino Americans with T2D. This study supports the use of mHealth and other promising intervention strategies to reduce obesity and diabetes risks in Filipino Americans. Further testing in a full-scale RCT is warranted. These findings may support intervention translation to reduce diabetes risks in other at-risk diverse populations. Trial Registration: NCT02290184; (Archived by WebCite at

  • Source: Pixabay; Copyright: Tesa Robbins; URL:; License: Public Domain (CC0).

    Transitional Needs of Australian Young Adults With Type 1 Diabetes: Mixed Methods Study


    Background: Young adulthood is marked by transitions that impact diabetes self-management behaviors, which require ongoing diabetes education and support. Traditional diabetes education programs and services currently do not meet the needs of many young adults with type 1 diabetes mellitus (T1DM) as they continue to fall through the cracks of clinical services. Age-centered diabetes education programs and services present an opportunity for young adults to meet in a supportive environment and gain a better understanding about diabetes management. Objective: The aim of the study was to identify the health and well-being needs of Australian young adults aged between 18 and 35 years with T1DM to develop appropriate solutions to keep them engaged with diabetes self-management. Methods: In total, 13 semistructured individual interviews and self-reported surveys were obtained to understand participants’ experiences with diabetes education programs and services. Together with survey data, transcribed interviews were analyzed into themes and categories using comparative analysis to identify the health and well-being needs of young adults with T1DM during young adulthood. Results: Diabetes education and service needs for young adults with T1DM related to improving access to existing diabetes education programs and services, having credible informational resources, as well as having personalized diabetes management advice. Participants especially valued relevant and real-time information and opportunities for peer support, mostly sourced from Web-based platforms. Conclusions: There is a need for diabetes education programs and services to be age-appropriate and easily accessible, to provide relevant and credible information, and to provide opportunities for peer support to better support young adults with T1DM. These findings also support the use of diabetes education programs or services delivered online through mHealth systems in this population.

  • Woman using the HCAI while eating a meal. Source: The Authors /; Copyright: The Authors; URL:; License: Creative Commons Attribution (CC-BY).

    A Fully Automated Conversational Artificial Intelligence for Weight Loss: Longitudinal Observational Study Among Overweight and Obese Adults


    Background: Type 2 diabetes is the most expensive chronic disease in the United States. Two-thirds of US adults have prediabetes or are overweight and at risk for type 2 diabetes. Intensive in-person behavioral counseling can help patients lose weight and make healthy behavior changes to improve their health outcomes. However, with the shortage of health care providers and associated costs, such programs do not adequately service all patients who could benefit. The health care system needs effective and cost-effective interventions that can lead to positive health outcomes as scale. This study investigated the ability of conversational artificial intelligence (AI), in the form of a standalone, fully automated text-based mobile coaching service, to promote weight loss and other health behaviors related to diabetes prevention. This study also measured user acceptability of AI coaches as alternatives to live health care professionals. Objective: The objective of this study was to evaluate weight loss, changes in meal quality, and app acceptability among users of the Lark Weight Loss Health Coach AI (HCAI), with the overarching goal of increasing access to compassionate health care via mobile health. Lessons learned in this study can be applied when planning future clinical trials to evaluate HCAI and when designing AI to promote weight loss, healthy behavior change, and prevention and self-management of chronic diseases. Methods: This was a longitudinal observational study among overweight and obese (body mass index ≥25) participants who used HCAI, which encourages weight loss and healthy diet choices through elements of cognitive behavioral therapy. Weight loss, meal quality, physical activity, and sleep data were collected through user input and, for sleep and physical activity, partly through automatic detection by the user’s mobile phone. User engagement was assessed by duration and amount of app use. A 4-question in-app user trust survey assessed app usability and acceptability. Results: Data were analyzed for participants (N=70) who met engagement standards set forth by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention criteria for Diabetes Prevention Program, a clinically proven weight loss program focused on preventing diabetes. Weight loss (standard error of the mean) was 2.38% (0.69%) of baseline weight. The average duration of app use was 15 (SD 1.0) weeks, and users averaged 103 sessions each. Predictors of weight loss included duration of AI use, number of counseling sessions, and number of meals logged. Percentage of healthy meals increased by 31%. The in-app user trust survey had a 100% response rate and positive results, with a satisfaction score of 87 out of 100 and net promoter score of 47. Conclusions: This study showed that use of an AI health coach is associated with weight loss comparable to in-person lifestyle interventions. It can also encourage behavior changes and have high user acceptability. Research into AI and its application in telemedicine should be pursued, with clinical trials investigating effects on weight, health behaviors, and user engagement and acceptability.

  • Source: Pixabay; Copyright: alphalight1; URL:; License: Public Domain (CC0).

    A Novel Approach to Identifying Barriers and Facilitators in Raising a Child With Type 1 Diabetes: Qualitative Analysis of Caregiver Blogs


    Background: With rising incidence of type 1 diabetes (T1D) diagnoses among children and the high levels of distress experienced by the caregivers of these children, caregiver support is becoming increasingly important. Historically, relatively few support resources have existed. Increasing use of the Internet, and blogs in particular, has seen a growth of peer support between caregivers of children with T1D. However, little is known about the type and quality of information shared on T1D caregiver blogs. At the same time, the information on such blogs offers a new window into what challenges and successes caregivers experience in helping to manage their children’s T1D. Objective: The purpose of this study was to (1) analyze blogs of caregivers to children with T1D to better understand the challenges and successes they face in raising a child with T1D, and (2) assess the blogs for the presence of unsafe or inaccurate clinical information or advice. Methods: An inductive thematic qualitative study was conducted of three blogs authored by caregivers of children living with T1D, which included 140 unique blog posts and 663 associated comments. Two physician investigators evaluated the blogs for presence of clinical or medical misinformation. Results: Five major themes emerged: (1) the impact of the child’s diagnosis, (2) the burden of intense self-management experienced in caring for a child with T1D, (3) caregivers’ use of technology to ease their fear of hypoglycemia and impacts that device alarms associated with this technology have on caregiver burden, (4) caregivers’ perceptions of frequently missed or delayed diagnosis of T1D and the frustration this causes, and (5) the resilience that caregivers develop despite the burdens they experience. Misinformation was exceedingly rare and benign when it did occur. Conclusions: Blog analysis represents a novel approach to understand the T1D caregiver’s experience. This qualitative study found many challenges that caregivers face in raising a child with T1D. Despite the many barriers caregivers face in managing their children’s T1D, they find support through advocacy efforts and peer-to-peer blogging. Blogs provide a unique avenue for support, with only rare and benign findings of medical misinformation, and may be a resource that diabetes care providers can consider offering to families for support.

  • Source: The Authors /; Copyright: The Authors; URL:; License: Creative Commons Attribution (CC-BY).

    A Website to Promote Physical Activity in People With Type 2 Diabetes Living in Remote or Rural Locations: Feasibility Pilot Randomized Controlled Trial


    Background: Research supports the use of Web-based interventions to promote physical activity in diabetes management. However, previous interventions have found poor levels of engagement or have not included health professionals and people with diabetes in the design of the tool. Objective: To develop and explore the feasibility and indicative effect of a Web-based physical activity promotion intervention in people diagnosed with type 2 diabetes living in remote or rural locations. Methods: A qualitative approach using focus groups that included patients with diabetes and health professionals were run to identify key concepts, ideas, and features, which resulted in the design of a physical activity website. This site was tested using a quantitative approach with a qualitative 6-month pilot study that adopted a three-armed approach. Participants were randomized into three groups: a control group who received written diabetes-specific physical activity advice; an information Web group, a Web-based group who received the information online; and an intervention Web group, an interactive Web-based group who received online information plus interactive features, such as an activity log, personalized advice, and goal setting. Results: A website was designed based on patient and health professional ideas for effective physical activity promotion. This website was tested with 31 participants, 61% (19/31) male, who were randomized into the groups. Website log-ins decreased over time: 4.5 times in month 1, falling to 3 times in month 6. Both the information Web group—mean 134.6 (SD 123.9) to mean 154.9 (SD 144.2) min—and the control group—mean 118.9 (SD 103.8) to mean 126.1 (SD 93.4) min, d=0.07—increased time spent in moderate-to-vigorous physical activity, but this decreased in the intervention Web group—mean 131.9 (SD 126.2) to mean 116.8 (SD 107.4) min. Conclusions: Access to online diabetes-specific physical information was effective in promoting physical activity in people with type 2 diabetes; access to interactive features was not associated with increases in activity. Trial Registration: International Standard Randomised Controlled Trial Number (ISRCTN): 96266587; (Archived by WebCite at

  • Source: iStock by Getty Images; Copyright: Pilin_Petunyia; URL:; License: Licensed by the authors.

    Functionality, Implementation, Impact, and the Role of Health Literacy in Mobile Phone Apps for Gestational Diabetes: Scoping Review


    Background: The increasing ownership of mobile phones and advances in hardware and software position these devices as cost-effective personalized tools for health promotion and management among women with gestational diabetes mellitus (GDM). Numerous mobile phone apps are available online; however, to our knowledge, no review has documented how these apps are developed and evaluated in relation to GDM. Objective: The objective of our review was to answer the following 2 research questions: (1) What is known from the existing literature about the availability, functionality, and effectiveness of mobile phone apps on GDM prevention and management? (2) What is the role of health literacy in these apps? Methods: We searched 7 relevant electronic databases for original research documents using terms related to mobile phone apps, GDM, and health literacy. We thematically categorized selected articles using a framework adapted from Arksey and O’Malley. Results: We included 12 articles related to 7 apps or systems in the final analysis. We classified articles around 2 themes: (1) description of the development, feasibility, or usability of the apps or systems, and (2) trial protocols. The degree of personalization varied among the apps for GDM, and decision support systems can be used to generate time-efficient personalized feedback for both patients and health care providers. Health literacy was considered during the development or measured as an outcome by some apps. Conclusions: There is a limited body of research on mobile phone apps in relation to GDM prevention and management. Mobile phone apps can provide time- and cost-efficient personalized interventions for GDM. Several randomized controlled trials have been launched recently to evaluate the effectiveness of the apps. Consideration of health literacy should be improved when developing features of the apps.

  • Source: Image created by the Authors; Copyright: The Authors; URL:; License: Creative Commons Attribution (CC-BY).

    Examining the Impact of a Novel Blood Glucose Monitor With Color Range Indicator on Decision-Making in Patients With Type 1 and Type 2 Diabetes and its...


    Background: Many patients struggle to interpret and respond appropriately to the numerical blood glucose results displayed on their meter, with many regularly taking no action or self-care adjustment for out-of-range results. We recently reported that a glucose meter that provides automatic onscreen information using a color range indicator (ColorSure Technology) improved the ability of patients to categorize their blood glucose results. Objective: The objective of this study was to examine how ColorSure Technology (or color) affected patient decision making on blood glucose results and how patient numeracy levels influenced such decisions. Methods: We invited 103 subjects (56 with type 2 diabetes and 47 with type 1 diabetes) to a face-to-face in-clinic visit in a diabetes care center and showed them glucose results with or without color via interactive computer or paper logbook exercises. Before participating in these exercises, subjects completed surveys on numeracy and their understanding of blood glucose information. Results: Subjects preferentially acted on high glucose results shown with color (55%, 57/103) compared to results without color (45%, 46/103; P=.001). When shown identical pairs of results, subjects preferentially acted on results shown with color (62%, 64/103) compared to results without color (16%, 16/103) (P<.001). Subjects more accurately identified days of the week in which results were low, in range, or high when reviewing logbooks with color (83%, 85/103) than without color (68%, 70/103; P=.012). Subjects with lower numeracy were more likely to consider taking action for high glucose results shown with color (59%, 18/31) than without color (41%, 13/31) and preferentially would take action on results shown with color (71%, 22/31) compared to results without color (16%, 5/31). Conclusions: Insulin- and noninsulin-using subjects were each more inclined to act when glucose results were shown with color, and associating glucose results with color was viewed as particularly beneficial by subjects with lower numeracy.

  • Source: Shutterstock; Copyright: Monkey Business Images; URL:; License: Licensed by JMIR.

    Mutual Involvement in Families With Type 2 Diabetes Through Web-Based Health Care Solutions: Quantitative Survey Study of Family Preferences, Challenges, and...


    Background: Type 2 diabetes (T2D) is a prevalent chronic disease that affects not just patients but entire families. Both the patient and the rest of the family may benefit from gaining knowledge about the disease and from supportive interfamilial interaction. The Internet is becoming a widely-used resource for health information, so a Web-based solution could potentially promote awareness and knowledge on how to manage T2D as a family, while also providing support for the family. Objective: We aim to assess the usage of online diabetes information by patients with T2D and their relatives, and explore the families’ needs and preferences regarding online information on diabetes. Methods: A quantitative self-reported questionnaire survey was performed with Danish families that had at least one family member diagnosed with T2D. The survey consisted of 36 closed questions on demographics, usage of the Internet, preferences in the source of information, interest in online information on six problem domains within family life related to T2D, preferences towards the delivery format of online information, and peer-to-peer communication. Two open-ended questions were also included to elicit any additional comments or suggestions about improving online information on T2D regarding family life. Results: Fifty participants from 22 families with T2D answered the questionnaire individually. Relatives (25/28, 89%) and patients (22/22, 100%) indicated that information on T2D is relevant for them, while indicating that the Internet is the first or second preferred source when in need of information on T2D (25/28, 89% vs 21/22, 95%). Only a minority of the participants indicated that they had searched the Internet to gain knowledge on T2D regarding family life (9/28, 32% vs 10/22, 46%). Also, patients were more likely to have used the Internet to gain information on T2D (P=.027). Both groups indicated a preference for watching videos or reading about T2D in relation to family life while a minority of the participants indicated an interest in peer-to-peer communication. Regarding the six problem domains, the domains Support, Knowledge, and Everyday Life were slightly more popular. These three domains were considered interesting by at least 79% (22/28) and 73% (16/22) of the relatives and patients respectively, while the domains Communication, Worries, and Roles were considered interesting by at least 46% (20/28) and 50% (11/22). Conclusions: Despite an interest in online information on T2D, there appears to be an unsatisfied need for more supportive online information on T2D aimed at Danish families with T2D. Based on family preferences, online information should focus on the six problem domains and be presented through text and videos by health care practitioners and peers. Peer-to-peer communication elements may be beneficial, but are only expected to be used by a very limited number of families.

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  • User-Centered Design of an Online Coping Intervention by and for Parents of Very Young Children with Type 1 Diabetes

    Date Submitted: Feb 6, 2018

    Open Peer Review Period: Feb 7, 2018 - Apr 4, 2018

    Background: Management of type 1 diabetes (T1D) among children under 6 years of age is exceptionally challenging for parents/caregivers. Metabolic and psychosocial outcomes among very young children w...

    Background: Management of type 1 diabetes (T1D) among children under 6 years of age is exceptionally challenging for parents/caregivers. Metabolic and psychosocial outcomes among very young children with T1D (YC-T1D) are tightly associated with their parents’ ability to meet these challenges. There is scant research testing interventions targeting these issues and few resources to equip health care providers to offer feasible and effective coping strategies to these parents. User-Centered Design (UCD) of a continuously accessible online resource providing information, problem-solving options, and emotional support to these parents could be a mechanism for helping more parents cope more effectively with the complex challenges they face as parents of YC-T1D. Objective: The objectives of this paper are to: 1. Describe the application of principles of User-Centered Design (UCD) to the development of an online coping intervention designed by and for parents of very young children (< 6 years old) with type 1 diabetes. 2. Illustrate the use of crowdsourcing methods in obtaining the perspectives of parents, health care providers, and web development professionals in designing and creating this resource. 3. Summarize the design of an ongoing randomized controlled trial that will constitute the last step in the UCD process by formally evaluating the effects of parental access to this resource on pertinent child and parent outcomes. Methods: This paper illustrates reliance on UCD principles in the creation of such a resource. The researchers used crowdsourcing methods to create an online coping resource designed by and for parents of YC-T1D. An online Parent Crowd and Health Care Provider Crowd and a Focus Group of minority parents provided input throughout the design process. A formal usability testing session and webinars demonstrating progress in website design provided additional stakeholder input as the design process proceeded. Results: The paper describes the completed website and the randomized controlled trial that is evaluating effects of access to the online resource on pertinent parent and child outcomes. Conclusions: UCD principles and the targeted application of crowdsourcing methods provided the foundation for development, construction and evaluation of a continuously accessible, archived, organic coping resource designed by and for parents of YC-T1D. The process described here could be a template for the development of similar resources for other special populations who are enduring specific medical or psychosocial sources of distress. The completion of an ongoing randomized controlled trial is the final step in the User-Centered Design process to validate the merits of this work. Clinical Trial: NCT03222180

  • Mixed-Methods Evaluation of the Phased Implementation of a National Telehealth Weight Management Program for Veterans

    Date Submitted: Jan 17, 2018

    Open Peer Review Period: Jan 20, 2018 - Mar 17, 2018

    Background: The burden of obesity is high among U.S. veterans yet many face barriers to engaging in in-person, facility-based treatment programs. To improve access to weight-management services, the V...

    Background: The burden of obesity is high among U.S. veterans yet many face barriers to engaging in in-person, facility-based treatment programs. To improve access to weight-management services, the Veterans Health Administration (VHA) developed TeleMOVE®, a home-based 82-day curriculum that utilizes in-home messaging devices to promote weight loss in VHA patients facing barriers to accessing facility-based services. Objective: Our primary aims were to establish preliminary evidence for the program to engage the priority population based on the number of patients enrolled per site as well as the program’s clinical effectiveness as demonstrated by average weight lost per patient. A secondary aim was to understand factors influencing implementation variability across demonstration sites to develop recommendations to inform the national TeleMOVE dissemination. Methods: We employed a formative mixed-methods design to evaluate the phased implementation of TeleMOVE programming at nine demonstration sites and to compare patient- and site-level measures of program uptake. Data was collected between October 1, 2009 and September 30, 2012. Twenty-eight stakeholders were recruited to provide contextual details while patient-level program outcomes were extracted from VHA patient care databases. Program stakeholders were recruited to participate in two rounds of semi-structured interviews about aspects of implementation processes, site-level contextual factors, and daily program delivery. Administrative data was used to evaluate program enrollment rates and clinical outcomes. To assess preliminary clinical effectiveness, weight loss outcomes for veterans who enrolled in TeleMOVE were compared to outcomes for participants enrolled in standard MOVE! at each demonstration site as well as to national averages during the first two years of program implementation. Results: Program uptake was high at two sites, delayed-high at one site, low at three sites, and three late-adopting sites declined interviews. At six months post-enrollment, mean weight loss was comparable for TeleMOVE (n=417) and MOVE! (n=1543) participants at -5.2 lb (SD=14.4) and -5.1 lb (SD=12.2), respectively (p=.91). All sites reported high program complexity because TeleMOVE required more staff time per participant than MOVE! due to logistical and technical assistance issues related to the devices. High-uptake sites overcame implementation challenges by leveraging strong communication networks with stakeholders, adapting the program to patient needs whenever possible, setting programmatic goals and monitoring feedback of results, and taking time to reflect and evaluate on delivery to foster incremental delivery improvements whereas, low-uptake sites reported less leadership support and effective communication among stakeholders. Conclusions: This evaluation of the phased implementation of a new clinical telehealth program demonstrates the value of partnership-based research in which researchers not only provide operational leaders with rapid and responsive feedback regarding the effectiveness of a new clinical program but also relevant feedback into contextual factors related to implementation to enable adaptations for national rollout of the program.