Developing and testing an integrated patient mHealth and provider dashboard application system for type 2 diabetes management among Medicaid-enrolled pregnant individuals based on a user-centered approach: Mixed-methods study

Digit Health. 2023 Jan 9:9:20552076221144181. doi: 10.1177/20552076221144181. eCollection 2023 Jan-Dec.


Background: A tailored and integrated technology solution (patient mHealth application and provider dashboard) can provide a 360° view of Medicaid-enrolled patients with type 2 diabetes (T2D) during pregnancy that could improve health outcomes and address health inequities.

Objectives: To develop a set of user specifications for the mHealth and dashboard applications, develop prototypes based on user needs, and collect initial impressions of the prototypes to subsequently develop refined tools that are ready for deployment.

Methods: Study activities followed a double-diamond framework with a participatory design mindset. Activities were divided into two phases focused on a qualitative inquiry about participant needs and values (phase 1) and design, development, and usability testing of low and high-fidelity prototypes (phase 2).

Results: We identified themes that exemplified pregnancy experience among Medicaid-enrolled individuals with T2D. Patients (n = 7) and providers (n = 7) expressed a core set of expectations for the mHealth and dashboard applications. Participants provided feedback to improve the mHealth and dashboard. For both applications, participants reported scores for the NASA Task load Survey (TLX) that were in the 20th percentile of national TLX scores.

Conclusions: Digital health tools have the ability to transform health care among Medicaid-enrolled patients with T2D during pregnancy, with the goal of managing their blood glucose levels, which is a precursor to experiencing a successful pregnancy and birth. Distilling patient and provider needs and preferences-then using them, along with prior studies and theory, to develop applications-holds great potential in tackling complicated health care issues.

Keywords: Pregnancy; dashboard; diabetes management; mHealth; mixed-method; mobile application; user-centered.