Tech support at home for diabetics in Dubai

Subscription-based initiative lets nurses and paramedics monitor a patient's blood sugar and pressure remotely and in real time

The service aims to improve chronic disease care through regular monitoring and constant communication about disease management between care provider and patient

Many people suffering from diabetes and hypertension usually cheat their diets and medication. A new health service launched earlier today hopes to enable patients and doctors to better manage the disease through close monitoring of blood glucose and blood pressure reading, constant data management through a mobile app connected to a call centre and patient outreach specialists. The programme was launched by Aster DM Healthcare.

The aptly named Chronic Care @ Home initiative was inaugurated by Amal Ali Al Mehrzi, Head of Performance Management Unit, Health Regulation Department at Dubai Health Authority (DHA) on behalf of Dr Layla Al Marzouqi, Director of Health Regulation at DHA; Dr Azad Moopen, Founder, Chairman and Managing Director, Aster DM Healthcare; and Alisha Moopen, Executive Director and CEO, Hospitals and Clinics (GCC), Aster DM Healthcare.

How it works 

  • After consulting a doctor from Aster, a patient is given smart monitoring devices to keep track of their blood glucose and blood pressure.
  • They have to download the compatible app that receives the readings and data from the devices.
  • The readings are monitored and checked by trained nurses and paramedics through a contact centre.
  • In case of fluctuations in the reading patterns, the patient receives direct calls from Aster care specialists.
ms-alisha-moopen-left-and-ms-amal-ali-almehrzi
Alisha Moopen (left) and Amal Ali Al Mehrzi

The new service is based on the international concept of improving chronic disease care through regular monitoring and constant communication about disease management between care provider and patient.

“At Aster, we strive to continuously strengthen our service offerings and bridge gaps in access to quality health-care services across the UAE, in alignment with the government’s vision,” says Dr Moopen. “The Aster Chronic Care @ Home programme aims to make disease management for patients a smooth and easy-to-use solution to make a positive difference in their lives. It is our constant endeavour to fulfil our commitment to improving the lives of the people that we serve every day through innovative solutions to achieve best health outcomes.”

Has this been tested? 

Prior to the programme’s introduction, a pilot study was conducted among diabetic patients who followed a monitoring regime advised by their doctors. Around 58 per cent of the patients showed reasonable improvement in managing the condition without any changes to their medication.

The study provided the basis for further analysis of disease management trends in UAE.

“Health care is shifting its focus from hospital-based acute care towards prevention, promotion of wellness, and maintenance of function in community- as well as home-based facilities,” says Alisha Moopen. “In the era of constant connectivity, the solution enables people to interact with health-care professionals for disease management at home or at work; patients can limit doctor visits to when an in-person clinical consultation is appropriate.”

Pricing and availability

The Aster Chronic Care @ Home package includes smart diabetes and blood pressure monitoring devices, constant care monitoring and fast-track services available at a one-year home monitoring subscription of Dh999 following consultation with a doctor. This can be renewed for Dh299, which works out to Dh54 a month over two years. The service is currently available in Dubai and will expand to other emirates over the coming months.