Smartphones in Type-2 Diabetes Group Education Programs
Type 2 diabetes remains a huge health concern. For several years patient organizations in Norway and abroad have organised group motivation and education programs, with a lot of financial investment going into the programs. However, current evidence suggests individual education and counselling are essential parts of diabetes management, and guidelines such as NICE have not considered the more cost effective group programs or electronic self-help applications as part of their recommendations. Based on a self-monitoring smartphone application with social features as well as summaries for GP/specialist contact, we hypothesise that group education is not inferior to individual education. This main hypothesis is based on the premise that smartphone applications can substitute the “individual” elements or personal aspects of individual education. Our secondary and tertiary hypotheses are based on the conjecture that group education programs enhanced with smartphone applications can actually result in more sustained behaviour change, as well as better satisfaction with treatment, than is otherwise possible with individual education alone.
The purpose of the project is to build evidence around the question whether use of smartphones in group education programs are as efficacious as individual education regimes. We also want to find out if smartphone applications can help patients sustain behaviour change, as well increase treatment satisfaction. The results would contribute to inform self-management guidelines for people with type-2 diabetes, as well as change research practice.