Earlier in the year my colleagues in our MedTech team and I published an article on how digital has the potential to transform the lives of COPD and Asthma sufferers around the world. Our investigation began by looking at the opportunities for connected inhalers, but rapidly moved to consider the whole patient pathway and how digital may affect the lives of those within it.

The paper - Understanding the Determinants of Non-adherence: a Key to Success in Using Digital Services to Improve Adherence in Inhaler Use - was published in pharmaceutical industry journal IPI. The infographic below brings out the key pieces of information we found during our research and how we believe digital is transforming our ability to deliver a truly patient-centered approach to healthcare.


This infographic was crafted from research material and design exploration perepared for a journal paper by Suresh Gupta, James Ward, Alex Agis, Katie Cornish, Jaquie Finn and Tim Murdoch; Understanding the Determinants of Non-adherence: a Key to Success in Using Digital Services to Improve Adherence in Inhaler Use, IPI Journal January 2017.

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[3] Chan-Yeung M., Ait-Khaled N., White N., Ip M.S. & Tan W.C. (2004). The burden and impact of COPD in Asia and Africa. The International Journal of Tuberculosis and Lung Disease, 8(1), pp.2-14.

[4] Millman, A., Tang, D. and Perera, F.P., 2008. Air pollution threatens the health of children in China. Pediatrics, 122(3), pp.620-628.

[5] Asthma UK (2016) Asthma Facts and Statistics. [Online] Available at: https://www.asthma.org.uk/about/media/facts-and-statistics/ [Accessed 08/12/2016]

[6] Gupta R., Sheikh A., Strachan D.P. & Anderson H.R. (2004). Burden of allergic disease in the UK: secondary analyses of national databases. Clinical & Experimental Allergy, 34(4), pp.520-526.

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[8] Van Schayck C.P., Van der Heijden F.M.M.A., van Den Boom G., Tirimanna P.R.S. & Van Herwaarden, C.L.A. (2000). Underdiagnosis of asthma: is the doctor or the patient to blame? The DIMCA project. Thorax, 55(7), pp.562-565.

[9] Looijmans-Van den Akker, I. van Luijn, K. & Verheij, T. (2016). Overdiagnosis of asthma in children in primary care: a retrospective analysis. Br J Gen Pract, 66(644), pp.e152-e157.

[10] PharmaTimes (2012) A third of patients don't fill prescriptions: survey. [Online] Available at: http://www.pharmatimes.com/news/a_third_of_patients_dont_fill_prescriptions_survey_975952 [Accessed 08/12/2016]

[11] Lavorini F., Magnan A., Dubus J.C., Voshaar T., Corbetta L., Broeders M., Dekhuijzen R., Sanchis J., Viejo J.L., Barnes P. & Corrigan, C. (2008). Effect of incorrect use of dry powder inhalers on management of patients with asthma and COPD. Respiratory medicine, 102(4), pp.593-604.

[12] Erickson, S.R. Horton, A. & Kirking, D.M. (1998). Assessing metered-dose inhaler technique: comparison of observation vs. patient self-report. Journal of Asthma, 35(7), pp.575-583.

[13] Conner J.B. & Buck P.O. (2013). Improving asthma management: the case for mandatory inclusion of dose counters on all rescue bronchodilators. Journal of Asthma, 50(6), pp.658-663.

[14] Pearce C., Jochmann A., Bush A., Home R. & Fleming L., 2016. Patterns of nonadherence in children with severe asthma. European Respiratory Journal, 48(supplement 60), PA3349

[15] Propeller Health (2016) Propeller. [Online] Available at: https://www.propellerhealth.com/how-it-works/ [Accessed 08/12/2016]

[16] Chan A.H., Stewart A.W., Harrison J., Camargo C.A. Jr, Black P.N & Mitchell E.A., 2015. The effect of an electronic monitoring device with audiovisual reminder function on adherence to inhaled corticosteroids and school attendance in children with asthma: a randomised controlled trial. Lancet Respir Med. 3(3), pp.210-219.

[17] Accenture (2016) [Online] Available at: https://www.accenture.com/t20160629T045303__w__/us-en/_acnmedia/PDF-6/Accenture-Patients-Want-A-Heavy-Dose-of-Digital-Infographic.pdf#zoom=50/ [Accessed 08/02/2017]

[18] Cordova F.C., Ciccolella D., Grabianowski C., Gaughan J., Brennan K., Goldstein F., Jacobs M.R. & Criner G.J., 2015. A Telemedicine-Based Intervention Reduces the Frequency and Severity of COPD Exacerbation Symptoms: A Randomized, Controlled Trial. Telemedicine and e-Health, 22(2), pp.114-122.

[19] Simpson A., Honkoop P., Sont J., Snoeck-Stroband J., Kennington E., East J., Coleman C., Usmani O., Chung K.F. & Fowler S., 2016. mHealth systems for asthma self-management: Opinions of people with asthma and healthcare professionals (HCPs) on their use and functions. European Respiratory Journal, 48(supplement 60), PA2888

[20] Cambridge Consultants (2016) [Online] Available at: https://www.cambridgeconsultants.com/projects/t-haler-inhaler-training-device [Accessed 08/12/2016] [21] Asthma UK Study (2017). [Online] Available at: https://www.asthma.org.uk/advice/living-with-asthma/sex-and-relationships/ [Accessed 13/02/2017]

Tim Murdoch

Tim is Director of Digital Services here at Cambridge Consultants with a background in innovation for mobile payments and digital services such as M-PESA.