May 21, 2014

Texting Doctors Help Adolescents with Chronic Diseases to Better Manage Healthcare, Study

Texting doctors help adolescents with chronic diseases like cystic fibrosis, gastrointestinal disorders (including Crohn's disease) and Type 1 diabetes to better manage their healthcare, according to a University of California San Diego study. The teens are also more likely to report early signs of health problems.

quotemarksright.jpg... Participating patients had access to a texting communication system that allowed them to report health concerns via text messages directly sent to the patient's health care team. Huang said this feature resulted in one patient in particular accessing timely emergency care when he might otherwise not have or would likely have waited until his condition had dramatically declined.

"The study found patients were communicating more with their physicians via text message and phone, and health care providers were utilizing the technology to start a productive dialogue with young patients and triage in an innovative way," said Jeannie Huang, MD, with the Department of Pediatrics at UC San Diego School of Medicine and Rady Children's Hospital-San Diego."In prior patient interviews, we found that advice given via a technology-based intervention appeared to be better tolerated. Patients felt they weren't being judged when reporting issues by technology rather than in person.quotesmarksleft.jpg

The study is published in the June issue of Pediatrics.

[University Herald and Press Release]

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