Does it take a community to improve blood glucose levels? One digital health entrepreneur thinks it could help

When Jeff Dachis was diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes, he recalls feeling let down by the lack of support for how to manage his newly diagnosed condition. Dachis launched One Drop earlier this year to develop an app and a glucose meter. The app for iOS network devices is designed not only to make it […]

When Jeff Dachis was diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes, he recalls feeling let down by the lack of support for how to manage his newly diagnosed condition. Dachis launched One Drop earlier this year to develop an app and a glucose meter. The app for iOS network devices is designed not only to make it easier for people with diabetes to track their blood-glucose levels, but also learn from what others in their anonymous community have done to bring their condition under control.

Dachis has spent 20 years in the technology field. He co-founded and led Razorfish. He later founded brand analytics business Dachis Group, which he sold to Sprinklr last year.

In a phone interview with MedCity News, Dachis said that one of the fundamental quandaries the app is designed to address is to give contextualized answers to the question of how other diabetics keep their b-g levels within safe parameters.

“You can have a great glucose reading, but if you don’t know how you arrived there, then it doesn’t really help. Each member of the community can see each others glucose readings and how they lowered them with insulin, activity and different meals.”

Here’s how the app works. Users enter their glucose reading, log the their meals and indicate whether they’re low, medium or high carbohydrate, how much inulin  they have taken, and their exercise. They can also indicate their stress level.  It also allow users to take a step back and look at their activity over the course of one week, a month. Users can share tip they have learned and also support each other with “likes.” Users can also share tips like restaurants that have good options for their diet.

Dachis said he deliberately designed the app to keep it as simple as possible so that people from a variety of backgrounds and technical abilities can use it.

But something else Dachis hopes users will get out of the app is the daily struggle that most people in the community go through in making the choices that impact their health. “Some people will always have good glucose readings. It may be a boring story, but for most [people with diabetes] it is pretty dynamic,” Dachis said. “We can give each other positive affirmation.”

He added, “Behavior modification isn’t going to come by spitting tons of data at people, but by showing data that allows people to see the cause and effect [of their actions].”

One Stop is also working with a manufacturer to develop a fashionable glucose meter which it is hoping will be available next year.