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Year : 2021  |  Volume : 12  |  Issue : 4  |  Page : 447-455

Impact of integrated medication reminders, gamification, and financial rewards via smart phone application on treatment adherence in uncomplicated type II diabetes patients: a randomized, open-label trial

1 Diabetes Care Clinic, Goa, India
2 MarksMan Healthcare Communications, Hyderabad, Telangana, India
3 Healthway Hospital, Goa, India

Correspondence Address:
Dr. Amit Dang
KYT-Adhere and MarksMan Healthcare Communications, H. No. 9-1-67, Plot No. 67, TNGO’s Colony, Behind Q City, Financial District, Hyderabad, Telangana 500032.
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/jod.jod_35_21

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Background: Poor medication adherence in type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM) leads to poor glycemic control. Materials and Methods: This randomized, open-labeled, controlled study recruited consenting adult patients with uncomplicated T2DM who were on daily oral antidiabetics with documented poor medication adherence (missing ≥20% of their prescribed doses in the past 15 days). Patients in the “incentive group” installed a digital therapeutics mobile app (KYT-Adhere) and received multiple daily medication reminders. Patients were asked to show the pill/(s) to the app before consuming the medication, after which the patients received “KYT-Points”; these would be converted into financial incentives after 3 months, provided that they maintained ≥80% medication adherence. These patients received incentives for 3 months and medication reminders for 6 months. “Control group” patients received standard care. Results: A total of 118/120 recruited patients completed the study; 59 each with similar baseline parameters were randomized to incentive and control groups. At baseline, medication adherence and HbA1c were comparable (adherence: 65.7±4.7% and 65.3±4.0%; HbA1c: 9.0±0.3% and 9.0±0.3% for incentive and control groups, respectively). Over the study duration, the incentive group showed a significant improvement in medication adherence (P < 0.001) and significant HbA1c reduction (P < 0.001). At study closure, the average medication adherence and HbA1c were significantly different between the two groups (adherence: 86.8±3.2% vs. 67.7±4.6%, P < 0.001; HbA1c: 7.3±0.2% vs. 8.2±0.3%, P < 0.001). Conclusion: Gamification through combining repeated medication reminders and rewards through a smartphone application brought about a behavioral change, which improved medication adherence and glycemic control among T2DM patients within 3 months and was sustained for 3 more months without rewards.

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