Value of Mobile Monitoring for Diabetes in Developing Countries
Scholar in Residence; Suzana Brown, doing research and teaching in Mobile Health at Carnegie Mellon University in Rwanda (CMUR), will be representing CMUR at a conference in South Africa on (Information and Communication Technology) ICT for development in early December 2013.
The paper explores the value of mobile monitoring for diabetes in developing countries on the premise that mobile phones are becoming a new platform to offer health services throughout the world. Diabetes is a metabolic disorder that refers to the condition created by the body’s inability to regulate glucose levels. It has been labeled the “silent epidemic” for its insidious and chronic nature.
The medical profession has postulated that patients could benefit from a system providing continuous glucose readings and that the predicted explosion of diabetes in the developing parts of the world could be averted using mobile health solutions. In remote areas where healthcare workers are scarce and patients have high travel cost it might be the only way to monitor the condition.
The paper’s presentation is geared at creating contacts to further the research and future collaborations within the field. Suzana along with Timothy X Brown, telecom Professor at CMUR define a model that evaluates a mobile health solution to monitor diabetes and explore the influence of two factors on the model: the discount rate and the cost of a telecom service. They test the model on data from three countries with a considerable health-care burden associated with the disease: the USA, Brazil and India.