Dignity Health, a national leader in healthcare systems, recently announced the results of a randomized, controlled study, indicating the use of digital health technology — namely the Propeller Health Asthma Platform — as an effective strategy to improve asthma control.
The Propeller Health Asthma Platform uses sensors, mobile apps, and analytics for the comprehensive monitoring of short-acting β-agonist (SABA) and inhaled corticosteroids use in real-time. Additionally, the platform delivers in-depth information about the medications’ patterns of use, and notifies caregivers about patients who are struggling with controlling their asthma.
“We are very pleased with the growing body of data that supports the effectiveness of our asthma platform,” said Propeller Health CEO David Van Sickle. “Our partnership with Dignity Health is important as we continue to advance innovation in chronic respiratory disease management and improve patients’ quality of life.”
The study, “Effectiveness of Population Health Management Using the Propeller Health Asthma Platform: A Randomized Clinical Trial,” was published in the The Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology: In Practice.
“The research demonstrates that the benefits of telehealth go beyond monitoring medication adherence, but can also identify patterns of risk and impairment,” said Dr. Rajan Merchant, the study’s principal investigator and Dignity Health’s Woodland Clinic Medical Group physician, in a press release. “This additional information may allow more timely interventions and enhanced asthma management.
“Although additional study efforts are needed, digital health is promising to help improve care and asthma control,” Merchant added.
The study enrolled more than 495 subjects (children and adults), and results suggested that Propeller Health Asthma Platform users – compared to the group using routine care systems – overall needed less SABA use and for a fewer number of days. In addition, the Asthma Control Test showed a significant increase in adults with uncontrolled asthma in the intervention group, compared to adults with uncontrolled asthma under routine care.
According to recent studies, more than 40 percent of adults and children in the U.S. report suffering from uncontrolled asthma. Present guidelines recommend monitoring of SABA use and asthma control assessment.
Asthma is a disease that is estimated to affect 5 to 10 percent of the world’s population, adding up to nearly 23.4 million people, including 7 million children worldwide. About 300,000 people are diagnosed with asthma annually, according to the World Health Organization, and nearly 250,000 people die prematurely each year due to the condition. In children, it is mostly predominant in boys, but after puberty the distribution is more equal.