Health App Challenge: Patient app designs are in and peer reviewers have chosen

The Health App Challenge was a one-year project that supported patients with diabetes or pre/post weight loss surgery to design and/or develop their very own health apps (e.g. mobile app, website or social media) to help manage their condition. Participants were offered advice from intellectual property experts, technical developers and medical professionals. Other patients were invited to review existing health apps they had used to help inform others, and review the Challenge entries to determine a winner.

Five teams entered the Challenge with their unique diabetes apps designs:

  • BWell Sugars System, a simple data entry and blood glucose trends tracker design.
  • BetterBGs, a clever real-time insulin and food dose advisory system design.
  • EasyDiabetes, a useful organiser design with a range of tools specifically for teens.
  • Dap’n, a motivational game design for better adherence to medical recommendations.
  • Gluco-Drive, a sensible alert design for monitoring blood glucose levels before driving.

Dap’n, the app design by Reina Yaidoo and her team, was chosen as winner of the contest for its high ratings (5/5) and praise from peer reviewers.

“…I love the concept of setting challenges and presenting health monitoring in a ‘game’ form…”

Since winning the Challenge, Reina and her team’s app design Dap’n has gained much interest and is currently shortlisted for funding support, to turn their design into a published health app, in two national programmes – Nominet Trust’s Social Tech Seed and Virgin’s Pitch to Rich. The Health App Challenge project team offers support and wishes them the best of luck!

Patients gave over 140 reviews of the Challenge designs and existing health apps (including bariatric apps), with The Diabetic Lounge and Carbs & Cals receiving the most reviews and praise amongst the existing health apps. You can still view the designs and reviews at www.healthappchallenge.org.uk.

Although the Health App Challenge has come to a close, the project team is in the process of arranging an online community area to support discussion and networking between people interested in health app development (e.g. patients, developers, health professionals etc.), including the potential for collaboration and further support for Challenge participants in turning their designs into working apps. Anyone interested, is welcome to email Emily.ashurst@plymouth.ac.uk

As a key outcome of the project, the team produced a booklet for interest in future Health App Challenges, and is available online at http://goo.gl/i9IRZO. ‘Patient-led innovation: How to run, take part in and support a Health App Challenge‘, is a combination of project experiences and information as asked by participants during the Challenge.

The project team would really like to know your views on this patient-led approach and on health app development in general, in a very brief, anonymous, 3-question survey. Everyone is encouraged to complete it at https://www.surveymonkey.com/s/HAC2014 and all feedback is much appreciated.

The Health App Challenge project was run by Plymouth University, funded by the Intellectual Property Office Fast Forward Competition 2014 and supported by Diabetes UK, WLSinfo, Handi, and Britain’s Nurses.

THE AUTHOR

Paul Budd

Co-Founder and Business Development Director

Paul is an experienced sales & marketing leader within the healthcare sector and is a Co-Founder of Salus Digital. He is a Digital Health enthusiast with a passion for extending the reach of technology to improve patient’s lives and reduce the strain on healthcare services.

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