News Diabetes Newsletter

Allowing for digitally enabled care in diabetes

Posted on 06.04.2022

Improving access to digitally-enabled diabetes care forms a central pillar of the MedTech Europe Diabetes Sector Group’s agenda. Digital devices and services provide a cost-effective solution for improving diabetes self-management while enabling more responsive and personalised care, leading to improved health outcomes and higher quality of life for people with diabetes and their care teams and reduced strains on health systems resources.

Digitally enabled diabetes care consists of an ecosystem of devices and services, as visualised in the Diabetes Group’s recent infographic. These include connected glucose monitoring systems, smart insulin delivery systems, health apps, and algorithms that transform health data into meaningful information to support diabetes management. These tools further enable services, such as telehealth solutions, e-prescriptions and e-health records. This ecosystem brings significant value to people with diabetes, their care teams and health systems.

Yet health systems do not use these tools to their full potential. To better understand why the Diabetes Group commissioned recent research from the Economist Intelligence Unit comparing the readiness of 10 European countries to deploy digital solutions in diabetes care. The resulting Digital Diabetes Index finds that, while countries have the necessary digital infrastructure, the need remains for up-to-date reimbursement pathways, assessment frameworks, and the political will to turn policy into meaningful action to unlock digital solutions in diabetes care.

There is broad agreement among stakeholders that digital solutions play an essential role in addressing the challenge of diabetes. In the recent white paper, A Vision for Digitally Enabled Care in Europe, the Diabetes Group asked stakeholders to reflect on the meaning of digital diabetes care and to envision a digitally-enabled future. How to make this future of digitally enabled diabetes care a reality will be the guiding question of a session co-organised between the European Diabetes Forum (EUDF) and ATTD at this year’s ATTD Conference in Barcelona (April 27-30). MedTech Europe is a proud supporter of both organisations.

Recognising the value of digitally enabled diabetes care and enabling its usage will be central to several relevant European initiatives. These include the EU “Healthier Together” NCD Initiative, which aims to promote best practices and innovative solutions in addressing the growing challenge of NCDs, as well as several national initiatives aiming to create a more digital-ready future for health systems, including the German DiGA law and the Belgian mHealth platform.

For more information on the work of the MedTech Europe Diabetes Group, please visit our website.