Medical technology company Jana Care announced that it is collaborating with Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH) to study the effectiveness of a mobile application (app) for the self-management of congestive heart failure. Recruitment of heart failure patients at MGH has just begun, and the study is expected to conclude by the end of 2017. The study is being funded by a grant from the Consortia for Improving Medicine with Innovation and Technology (CIMIT) through their Point-of-Care Technologies Research Network (POCTRN) program.
Through its POCTRN program funded by NIBIB, CIMIT drives the development of point-of-care diagnostic technologies through collaborative efforts that merge scientific and technological capabilities with clinical need. “We are pleased with Jana Care’s progress and look forward to the study results,” said John Parrish, CIMIT CEO and Principal Investigator for the POCTRN program.
“As clinicians managing patients with heart failure, we can only pass on so much information and skills to a patient during an office visit. Clinical practice guidelines emphasize the importance of self-care and patient education to improve outcomes. A user-friendly app may provide an opportunity for patients to build good habits and better manage their conditions – and achieve these important goals.” said James Januzzi, MD, a cardiologist at MGH.
The mobile application, Heart Habits, was developed by Jana Care. It provides an easy-to-use interface for heart failure patients to learn how to manage their lifestyle and monitor their heart failure symptoms. The Heart Habits app provides a daily checklist to guide patients to take bite-sized lessons, track their weight, sodium and fluid intake, and check in on their symptoms.
Twice a week, or in the event of substantial weight gain, patients will be prompted to take a survey to assess the severity of their symptoms. Depending on the severity of the survey, patients will be advised to either call their doctors or 911, or simply check in with their providers later. Their symptom results and progress are shared with the study investigators via a web dashboard. Patients can also contact their study team via the chat functionality in the app.
Participating patients will be enrolled for 6 weeks. At the end of study, their knowledge of heart failure and a self reported quality of life assessment will be compared to those of in the control group.
“In designing the Habits Heart application, we considered both the clinician and patient experience carefully. Cardiologists from MGH provided input based on their clinical expertise in content and patient management. We combined this deep area knowledge with Jana Care’s experience in creating scalable digital coaching programs [via the app] in an easy-to-use but engaging way for heart failure patients.” said A.J. Kumar, PhD, Chief Scientific Officer of Jana Care.
Read the full article on the CIMIT website.