Keio University Hospital Begins Offering Telemedicine Utilizing Blood Sugar Level Cloud Management System in its Diabetes and Obesity Outpatient Services
December 22, 2020
Keio University Hospital
Chubu Electric Power Co.,Inc.
Medical Data Card, Inc.
On November 20, Keio University Hospital (Hospital General Director: Yuko Kitagawa), Chubu Electric Power Co., Inc. (President & Director: Kingo Hayashi; "Chubu Electric Power"), and Medical Data Card, Inc. (President & CEO: Kunihiro Nishimura; "Medical Data Card") jointly launched telemedicine utilizing a blood sugar level cloud management system as well as operation of a telemedicine support system that Keio University Hospital (Department of Nephrology, Endocrinology and Metabolism) will employ as part of its diabetes and obesity outpatient services.
1 System overview and benefits
This system utilizes Chubu Electric Power's data platform and Medical Data Card's "MeDaCa" app to configure a mechanism onto the remote prenatal care system, which was launched in June of this year for obstetrics outpatient services, that records patients' blood sugar levels as well as insulin or other preparation usage.
This system makes it possible for physicians to check data that patients have consented to release about their blood pressure, weight, blood sugar levels, insulin usage, and other metrics without the patient having to leave home. Blood pressure gauges and weight scales are already capable of automatically consolidating data via a cloud link. The aim is to someday link up with a self-monitoring blood sugar meter, thereby alleviating the burden on patients to manually input their data.
The system uses Medical Data Card's already-available "MeDaCa" app and allows physicians and patients to consult via video call as well as send test results, prescription data, and other information to the app. The system will also serve as a bridge for information connecting a diabetes specialist with the patient as well as a diabetes specialist with the patient's family physician.
Because this system allows physicians to check blood sugar level data in real-time, it can be utilized for remote prenatal checkups as part of obstetrics outpatient services and may also be adopted for patients with gestational diabetes or pregnancy-induced hypertension who require follow-up at even shorter intervals.
Moreover, it may also be put to use for patients with type I diabetes and others who require frequent insulin injections and precise fine-tuning of insulin amounts as well as for obesity outpatient services where dialogue is emphasized and physicians need to have an understanding of not only the patient's lifestyle but also psychological aspects of the patient's life.
Currently, this system has been adopted and launched to provide medical care for patients with gestational diabetes. Patients have rated it highly thanks to the extensive convenience it offers, freeing them from the burden of traveling to the hospital as well as the time constraint, providing peace of mind with face-to-face consultations via its teleconferencing function, as well as other benefits from a great many features.
Particularly for gestational diabetes, this system makes medical services more efficient and improves their quality not only in terms of physicians conducting actual medical examinations in person and having comparably-favorable data available, but also in terms of providing better visibility thanks to data collection and allowing physicians to offer medical service without hesitation even at short-interval follow-ups as patient hospital visits no longer need to be taken into consideration. Patient stress is also alleviated as they do not have to wait in front of a consultation room for their appointment to be called.
COVID-19 shows no signs of being eradicated, a situation which has made it necessary to reduce the risk of infection that may rise when visiting a hospital or clinic not to mention the physical and emotional burden. On the other hand, there is also the risk that prolonging face-to-face medical consultations unadvisedly may worsen a patient's condition. Through the use of this system, physicians are able to check patient data measured at home in real time. This makes it possible to verify therapeutic efficacy soon after modifying a patient's course of treatment, coordinate the timing when patients come to a hospital or clinic so that it best coincides with the status of their blood sugar control, make determinations in advance about whether to see a patient remotely or in person, as well as offer other sorts of attentive care appropriate to the patient's actual data.
This system is continuously being upgraded. The goal is to construct a seamless data-linked remote medical service system that will transcend the barriers of healthcare institutions and medical device manufacturers. Keio University Hospital Chubu Electric Power, and Medical Data Card are working to develop such a system.
The Cabinet Office commissioned Keio University Hospital to participate in a research and development project entitled the Cross-Ministerial Strategic Innovation Promotion Program: Advanced Diagnosis and Treatment System by AI (Artificial Intelligence) Hospital. As part of this project, Keio University Hospital has been conducting research jointly with Chubu Electric Power on monitoring patients at home, remote medical consultations, and community health care support. This initiative is one achievement of this program.
Through this initiative, Keio University Hospital has strived to create an environment within which patient's needs may be addressed, even remotely, and aimed to provide safe and reliable medical care to more and more expecting mothers and diabetic patients.
Keio University Hospital, Chubu Electric Power, and Medical Data Card will continue to harness AI and IoT technology to support physicians in making more accurate diagnoses and communicating with patients, thereby providing even better medical care, as well as to strive to develop services that allow people to lead healthy lives.
This initiative has been supported by the research and development project "Cross-Ministerial Strategic Innovation Promotion Program: Advanced Diagnosis and Treatment System by AI (Artificial Intelligence) Hospital" that the Cabinet Office commissioned Keio University Hospital to undertake.