Introduction: Significant racial and ethnic disparities in care have been observed in type 2 diabetes, including impairments in diagnosis, access to care and outcomes. Complex social and cultural factors drive these disparities, some of which might be mitigated through digital approaches. Digital therapeutic platforms assist users in achieving and maintaining target blood glucose levels. This study examines by race/ethnicity the differences in blood glucose levels among users of a digital health platform over a year based on real-world data.
Method: A retrospective data study was performed on the Dario™ database. A group of Dario digital therapeutic users with type 2 diabetes started with average blood glucose above 180 mg/dL (“high-risk users”) and reported in the app ethnicity as one of the following: White, Latino, Black or Asian. This population was active during 2019-2021 and took >3 blood glucose measurements in the first and 12th months. A Statistical analysis (ANOVA) was used to evaluate the difference in average blood glucose level over a year.
Results: A group of 1000 users was analyzed, 736 (74%) White; 122 (12%) Latino; 103 (10%) Black, and 39 (4%) Asian. The average glucose level significantly reduced in all users and per ethnic group over a year: All users by 14% (230±58 vs. 197±47) (p<0.001) ; respondents identifying as White reduced by 14% (229±58 vs. 197±47) ; Latino by 15% 237±59 vs. 202±48) (p<0.001) ; Black by 15% (230±63 vs. 196±48) (p<0.001) and Asian by 15% (229±55 vs.195±43) (p<0.001) . Finally, no significant differences in average blood glucose reductions between the races/ethnicities in the first month and in 12th month were observed (p=0.384) .
Conclusion: Digital therapeutic platforms may promote behavior modification in high-risk patients with type 2 diabetes to create sustainable outcomes. While treatment, as usual, is generally associated with disparate outcomes by race/ethnicity, the present study suggests that digital therapeutics may improve compliance and diabetes management and therefore address some of the disparities seen in diabetes care.
Y. Hershcovitz: None. T. Gershoni: None. O. Manejwala: Employee; DarioHealth Corp., Stock/Shareholder; DarioHealth Corp.