Happy New Year, everyone! I am starting this blog to document a new, year-long project related to Databetes, the company I have founded. Throughout the year, I am recording all my diabetes-related data in an effort to improve my type-1 diabetes control. This includes every blood sugar reading, medication dosage, exercise statistic and A1c blood test. I will also record nutritional information for every meal, snack and (non-water) beverage. I’ll also be adding photographs, geolocation data and other information from my mobile phone.
It has been over 25 years since I was diagnosed with diabetes. During that time, I have certainly benefited from developments in medical devices and medications. I have used an insulin pump for 24 years and a continuous glucose monitor for two. Together, these two devices alone have allowed me to live a fuller and healthier life. For years I traveled abroad for my work as a photographer and was still able to keep my diabetes in check.
Yet today’s software fails to take advantage of all the potential in our data. A new generation of software is needed to provide patients with the personalized and precise information necessary for making better daily treatment decisions. Since none of the major health industry companies have developed solutions on this front in recent years, it is time for patients and entrepreneurs to develop the missing solutions.
It is time to re-imagine the entire user experience of being a patient with diabetes. There is tremendous potential in applying information technology, creative design and research into behavior change into a comprehensive product for patients. Technology-based solutions are increasingly important resources in these times of skyrocketing treatment costs and lmited doctor availability.
My goal with Databetes is to provide new ways for patients to improve their health, positively interact with the greater patient community and share our knowledge. I believe the right combination of data and social can be a powerful addition to existing treatment regimens, helping patients to stay connected, informed, motivated and healthy in the years and decades of living with this condition.
In the future, Databetes.com will host the company’s products. During this current phase of development, I will write at this Databetic.com address to share with you my thoughts on this experience as a patient. I will also share with you how this project leads to an evolution in our software. I’ll also incorporate relevant experiences from my graduate school studies at NYU’s Interactive Telecommunications Program.
I am beginning the year with a recent A1c blood test result of 6.5%, a respectable number in the range suggested by doctors. Yet there is always room for improvement. During the year, I will test to see whether the new approaches I develop can help me further improve my control and live an even healthier life.
Thanks for your interest! I hope you will visit often in the coming year to check on my progress.