Digital Therapeutics:  Expanding Role of Medical Technology

Digital Therapeutics: Expanding Role of Medical Technology

- April 11, 2018

Technology-based health management solutions are now at the forefront of efforts to treat chronic health problems. Referred to as digital therapeutics, these solutions rely on providing behavior changes to patients.

Digital therapeutics use various digital implements such as mobile devices and technologies, apps, sensors, desktop computers, and various Internet of Things devices to manage, monitor, and prevent illnesses in patients.

In fact, many health tech companies are attempting to digitize medicine; some encouraging patients to retrieve prescription treatments from the app store, according to a report in the New York Times.

Reset, an app for treating patients addicted to substances like cocaine and amphetamines, will hit the market very soon. It’s an app that gives patients lessons to help them modify their behavior.  And it has been cleared by the Food and Drug Administration.

The goal of the app is to teach patient skills such as avoiding situations that cause their substance use, or learning how to reject an offer of drugs. The ultimate goal is for behavior modification to lead to abstinence.

“It’s all the things you would traditionally associate with a pill or any other medication,” said Dr. Corey McCann, the chief executive of Pear Therapeutics, the start-up behind Reset. “But it just so happens to be a piece of software.”

Reset is not the first prescription mobile medical app.  BlueStarRX, prescription diabetes management app, has also been cleared by the FDA.

Pear Therapeutics seems to be leading the pack in the category of medical treatment, known as “prescription digital therapeutics.” These products are medical apps that have been studied in randomized clinical trials and cleared by the Food and Drug Administration. They require a doctor’s prescription and allow doctors to track patients’ progress.

According to another report, digital therapeutics offer such benefits  as fitness or wellness tracking, medical guidance and education, and drug administration, which is another factor expected to fuel demand for digital therapeutics and in turn boost growth of the global market over the forecast period.

Experts believe digital therapeutics help cut healthcare costs which is another factor anticipated to propel growth of the global market.

Players in the global digital therapeutics market include: Proteus Digital Health, Inc., Omada Health, Inc., Doximity, Inc., 2Morrow, Inc.,, Inc., WellDoc, Inc., Mango Health, Inc., Canary Health Inc., Twine Health, Inc., and Noom, Inc.

Factors that could potentially restrain the growth of digital therapeutics include: security issues related to patient data, stringent government regulations for product approval, and lack of awareness about digital therapeutics and its benefits.




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