In this MEDICA-tradefair.com interview, Diana Droßel talks about "DiaDigital", describes its advantages for app development companies and the evaluation process behind it, and explains privacy, usability and other criteria for app evaluation.
Ms. Droßel, what prompted the creation of the "DiaDigital" official seal?
Diana Droßel: At the 2015 DiaTec Conference – the abbreviation stands for "diabetes and technology" – we realized that while patients with diabetes want to learn more and more about diabetes apps, doctors and diabetes educators often lack the relevant in-depth knowledge to coach them.
To increase and foster their skills and knowledge, we have formed a working group that includes patients and focuses on diabetes apps, while tackling issues like usability and data protection. That said, our conversations about diabetes apps soon revealed that while we have the medical expert knowledge, we are not authorities in technical matters. By collaborating with the ZTG Center for Telematics and Telemedicine, we have found a partner who helps us in this area.
At one of our workshops, we created a set of criteria for evaluating diabetes apps. It is based on the CHARISMHA study (Chances and Risks of Mobile Health Apps). We also collaborated with experts like Prof. Peter Schwarz from the University Hospital Dresden. Our app testers are currently using this set of criteria checklist, which was presented at the 2017 Diabetes Congress of the German Diabetes Association.
Are physicians, diabetes educators, and patients embracing the diabetes apps?
Droßel: Yes, they increasingly take advantage of these apps. Admittedly, this is a very slow process, causing the apps to not be in widespread use just yet. The trend gradually changes from simple tracker apps like bread unit calculators and calorie management to blood glucose diaries and finally apps that can be connected to blood glucose meters, continuous glucose monitoring systems or pumps.