Using an mHealth App to Transition Care of Type 1 Diabetes from Parents to Teens: Protocol for a Pilot Study

Academic Article


  • Background: Type 1 diabetes mellitus (T1DM) afflicts approximately 154,000 people under the age of 20 in the United States. Most people with T1DM are diagnosed at a young age, and parents have to take on the responsibility of T1DM management. Eventually, the child must begin to transition to self-management. Adolescents often struggle to take on responsibility for all the necessary tasks to successfully self-manage their T1DM. In fact, approximately three-quarters of adolescents are not achieving American Diabetes Association–recommended glycated hemoglobin (HbA1c) targets. This lack of adherence can lead to negative health outcomes. Objective: The goals of this interdisciplinary proposal are as follows: (1) to develop a unique and theory-driven technology using a mobile phone app to promote self-management behaviors for adolescents aged 10-15 years with T1DM and their parents and (2) to explore the feasibility and impact of the self-management mobile app. Methods: This study has two phases: app development and pilot testing. In the app development phase, the app will be conceptualized and a prototype will be tested. In Phase 2, the mobile app will undergo pilot testing to determine its feasibility and impact on diabetes self-management. Results: The pilot test was launched in September 2017. Data collection for the final pilot test is underway, and results are forthcoming. Conclusions: Adolescents with T1DM and their parents can have a difficult time managing the transition of diabetes care. It is hoped that this app can help. The focus groups and prototype testing have indicated promising outcomes of app use.
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    Author List

  • Holtz BE; Mitchell KM; Hershey DD; Cotten SR; Holmstrom AJ; Richman J; Dunneback JK; Wood MA
  • Volume

  • 7
  • Issue

  • 10