The availability of various pharmacological therapies for blood glucose control has significantly increased the treatment options for managing diabetes. While algorithmic approaches have been utilized traditionally to achieve target glycemic control, such “one-size-fits-all” approaches are rigid, suboptimal, and overlook critical variables that should be involved in an individual’s diabetes care.
To combat these challenges, personalizing treatment plans has become a rising trend in healthcare, particularly for chronic conditions such as diabetes. Personalized diabetes management (PDM) is heavily based on the hope that individualization can improve treatment outcomes.
The significance of PDM was recently highlighted in a joint position statement by the American Diabetes Association and the European Association for the Study of Diabetes. Studies also show that PDM can increase the effectiveness and efficacy of therapy and improve treatment outcomes.
What Does Personalized Care in Diabetes Mean?
PDM is the process of developing a clinical or treatment plan that is tailored to an individual and their specific diabetes condition. It considers many phenotypes and personal characteristics of the patient, making the concept of PDM more broad and subjective to the patient.
Until recent years, the management of diabetes did not consider individual characteristics. Much of the available treatment options recommended are based on evidence from phase 3 clinical trials and real-world evidence based on population-based studies. Unfortunately, the findings of the studies have made a noticeable difference to overall diabetes care, as it does not examine the concept of personalization.
The PDM provides a framework for physicians and patients to benefit from a connected and tailor-made approach to structured diabetes management. It facilitates evidence-based therapeutic decision-making by identifying barriers that limit treatment success in a patient and targeting them accordingly.
Factors To Be Considered In Personalized Diabetes Management
Endocrinologists and diabetes specialists believe an effective personalized diabetes management plan should consider phenotypic factors, gender differences, clinical and medical factors, personal profiles and preferences, psychosocial factors, and genetic factors.
Among these variables, there is a mounting sentience of the importance of patient-related influences such as personal preference, age and life expectancy, duration of diabetes, hypoglycemia risk and awareness, body weight and psychosocial factors.
In addition, including patient preferences in the decision-making process is seen as crucial and strongly associated with improved medication adherence, quality of life, healthcare costs, and health outcomes among diabetic patients.
Sometimes, patients with similar personal factors or demographics and medical comorbidities may have very different treatment priorities and preferences. Thus making early discussions and informed decisions through involving patients is essential to reduce the complications, resistance, and non-compliance in following a diabetes program.
The PDM Approach At GluCare
Our PDM process at GluCare aims to provide a holistic approach to diabetes management that helps each individual feel their best everyday. We first start by assessing your diabetic condition. Once the results are out which occurs in less than 40 minutes, your physician will try to thoroughly understand your unique individual profile, preferences, and complete medical history. This is including a look into phenotypic, psychosocial and genetic factors. This information is analyzed to set up a hyper-personalized diabetes management program that meets your unique diabetic condition and optimizes treatment outcomes with an easy-to-follow plan.
Your dietician and diabetes educator will help you understand the details of your personalized care plan. Then your coach will provide the starter kit (wearable and other devices), help you download our app, and explain how our PDM model works. Our team has real-time access to your data, allowing us to manage patients continuously by including necessary information on glucose, sleep, and activity and management of medications remotely.
Our healthcare team, including endocrinologists, nurses, educators, dietitians and health coaches, will review your data daily and clarify your questions in the app if you have any. Besides that, they will also inform you of your progress, necessary adjustments, and any other important check-ups you need to make.
In your follow-up visits, your physician will show you a breakdown of your data and their correlation to your diabetes management progress. Based on the data, they will make appropriate recommendations to optimize your treatment plan and health outcomes. Our approach to PDM brings together both physicians and patients for collaborative decision-making that fosters a healthy clinician–patient-relationship.