Published on 31 March 2020

The monitoring system for the management of diabetes in pregnancy made available to comply with social distancing guidance.

A digital system that helps healthcare professionals remotely monitor women with diabetes during pregnancy has been made available for free across the NHS in response to COVID-19 guidelines.

Recently announced government guidelines recommend all pregnant women avoid face-to-face contact for three months as part of wider advice to help people protect themselves and others and help prevent the spread of the virus.

The GDm-Health digital therapeutic product produced by Sensyne Health will be available free to NHS Trusts for one year.

The system enables the remote management of women with diabetes during pregnancy by their clinical care team.

The device works through a smartphone application connected to a wireless blood glucose monitor, which sends results directly to the hospital team supervising care, enabling this high-risk group to monitor their condition safely at home.

The system is regulated, CE marked and clinically validated and can be rapidly deployed and already commercially available and in-use at 16 NHS trusts.

Sensyne Health will work collaboratively with the NHS to broaden the use of the product.

Lord Paul Drayson, CEO of Sensyne Health, said: “In light of the UK government’s guidelines around ‘social distancing’ to combat the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, there is now a greater focus than ever before on the use of remote patient monitoring to reduce the burden on limited NHS resources and help high-risk people stay at home.

“Providing this product free of charge during the pandemic will enable the NHS to adopt GDm-Health quickly and provide remote care for more pregnant women during this crucial time and hence reduce hospital visits for this high-risk group.

“We are also working closely with our NHS partners as well as our industry collaborators on modifying our existing technologies to aid remote patient monitoring and provide the authorities with additional relevant information on the pandemic.”

Lucy Mackillop , Chief Medical Officer of Sensyne Health plc and consultant obstetric physician at Oxford University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust and Honorary Senior  Clinical Lecturer, Nuffield Department of Women's and Reproductive Health, University of Oxford, said: “I am pleased that GDm-Health is being deployed more broadly during this crisis to help this high-risk group receive their diabetes care safely at home. 

“GDm-Health has made the transition to a commercial product and is already available across the NHS. This product is a result of an enormous amount of work by the clinical and academic teams at Oxford University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust and University of Oxford and by Sensyne Health to have taken our prototype and transformed it into a sustainable scalable product.”

Since its launch in August 2018 results of using the system have had a positive impact for mothers-to-be and 20 NHS Trusts have adopted the product, with the system now live in 16 of those Trusts.

The system is reported to have helped avoid an estimated 1,312 caesarean sections and 532 pre-term births, while 780 mothers have avoided transitioning to further pharmacological treatment.

It also displayed the potential for cost-savings to the NHS through improved patient outcomes.

Diabetes during pregnancy refers to an intolerance of glucose during pregnancy.

Read Healthcare professionals recommendations for people with diabetes during the COVID-19 crisis
Read Washing your hands and home isolation advice from Public Health England to help prevent the spread of COVID-19
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