Fitterfly, a leading health-tech company working in the field of digital therapeutics (DTx), has released a whitepaper on the advocacy of digital therapeutics among clinicians in India. After reviewing 2877 prescriptions from 1897 Fitterfly members, with minimal mention of digital therapeutics as a therapy option, a survey was conducted among clinicians to assess their awareness of this approach.
The first-of-its-kind whitepaper is based on the findings of a recently conducted comprehensive survey, assessing the usage, prescription guidelines, and outcomes of Digital Therapeutics (DTx) in diabetes management. It analyzed the responses of 232 doctors who treat diabetes (Endocrinologists, diabetologists and physicians) from 99 cities across India. As more than 70% of patients in India struggle with poor glycemic control, the survey aimed to evaluate how innovative technologies like DTx can bridge treatment gaps and achieve improved outcomes.
72% of doctors expressed the necessity of incorporating DTx
- 71% of the doctors highlighted the lack of adherence to medication and advice as their most significant challenge
- 58% of doctors feel that poor self monitoring & lack of literacy is the barrier to good outcomes.
- 63% of the doctors believe that DTx can yield superior outcomes through greater personalization of the treatment that boosts adherence and enhances patient satisfaction.
- Approximately 72% of doctors expressed the necessity of incorporating DTx into their arsenal of treatment options.
- 54% of doctors advocate the use of DTx for optimizing medical therapy and possible reduction in insulin and oral hypoglycemic agent (OHA) intake.
As the prevalence of diseases such as diabetes continues to rise at an alarming rate, doctors throughout India are witnessing a surge in patient caseloads and the increasing complexity of associated illnesses. The findings reveal a significant shift in the perception and adoption of DTx among healthcare professionals in India. Survey also showed that 94% of the doctors were keen to get trained on incorporating DTx into their practice and prescription guidelines.
Dr Arbinder Singal, CEO, and Co-Founder of Fitterfly, highlighted the impact made by DTx platforms in addressing diabetes, a pressing challenge to public health. “Lack of awareness, diagnostics, and medication adherence contributes to its prevalence and poor diabetes control, with medication costs affecting 33% of cases. Embracing Digital Therapeutics (DTx) is crucial to overcome these challenges. DTx utilizes precise personal health data for customized and holistic diabetes management. The findings in the whitepaper highlight growing awareness and acceptance of DTx among doctors, indicating its potential as a mainstream approach to tackle diabetes and chronic ailments. In fact, more than half of the doctors that responded to the recent Fitterfly survey opined that DTx can not only lead to better blood glucose control but can also reduce the dose of medication required. This leads to greater patient adherence and a positive impact on diabetes management.”
Furthermore, Dr Singal emphasized that “Digital Therapeutics have an edge in terms of personalized treatment and increased patient engagement leading to superior adherence and outcomes. These are two of the biggest benefits of this tech-driven approach. However, it may be beneficial for HCPs to undergo live online training sessions that can familiarize them with the tools and processes of DTx.”
Diabetes, a chronic ailment affecting millions of individuals, has reached epidemic proportions and is often accompanied by comorbidities such as heart disease, infections, chronic fatigue, and obesity. These conditions significantly diminish both the quality of life and productivity of those affected. DTx has emerged as a panacea for addressing these challenges by offering an evidence-based therapeutic approach that closely monitors individual conditions and tailors care programs to their specific needs.
Given that the lack of health awareness is considered a core factor contributing to the diabetes surge (as identified by 57% of doctors surveyed), the time is ripe to utilize DTx platforms not only for treating and managing the disease but also for disseminating information on a large scale. As awareness grows among healthcare providers and individuals with diabetes, DTx is poised to become more mainstream, affordable, and accessible across the country and even globally.