Technology is advancing faster than ever before and affecting every part of our lives. Importantly, it’s revolutionizing the way we manage chronic conditions, like diabetes, which affects more than 29 million people in the U.S. alone.
By seamlessly connecting patients, healthcare providers and care teams, technology has the potential to improve access to medical records, update caregivers on how their loved ones feel, monitor treatment adherence and work in countless other ways to aid the improvement of health outcomes.
Some of these solutions are already available. The new Apple Watch Series 4 has a built-in sensor that monitors heart rates and alerts people to anomalies, so they can talk to their doctor about next steps to better monitor their heart health. Philips HealthSuite’s Care Orchestrator remotely monitors and manages sleep apnea so healthcare providers can make clinical decisions that may result in faster diagnoses and treatment guidance.
At Eli Lilly and Company, improving disease management and health outcomes by bringing health care to the patient through connected technology is at the forefront of our research. We’re focused on developing innovative solutions by combining digital technology with pharmaceutical technology across our diabetes, oncology, pain and immunology platforms to empower and enable people to better manage their conditions. A great example of this is the work we are doing in diabetes.
While healthcare technologies have progressed in many areas, technology to manage diabetes has remained largely the same. Diabetes is complicated, and people with the condition need better solutions. That’s what inspired us to pursue our most advanced program under development, what we like to call the Connected Diabetes Ecosystem. The ecosystem will use the latest technological advancements available to help people with diabetes, their caregivers and healthcare providers manage the condition. If approved, our plan is for the first generation to have three core components: insulin, smart devices and evidence-based dosing algorithms. These components are being designed to analyze blood sugar trends in response to insulin dose changes and capture people’s behaviors to give them actionable insights intended to provide simpler, more effective diabetes management.
The healthcare industry has made significant strides in technology to improve chronic disease management, but there is much more work to do and many opportunities ahead. Lilly is focused on developing technology to integrate with medicines to help people with chronic diseases manage their conditions. We’re excited about the possibilities and remain committed to applying technological innovation to improve people’s lives.
About the Author: Matt Clemente, Senior Director, Delivery Systems Engineering & Technology, Eli Lilly and Company