The NYU Langone Medical Center’s Rusk Rehabilitation facility is embarking on a new clinical trial testing the effect of a mobile app on cardiac rehabilitation beyond three months. The 100-patient trial will test the MOVN app from Marina Del Rey, California-based Moving Analytics.
“We are just interested in knowing what happens when people leave the door, after they finish the program,” Michelle Smith, an assistant research scientist at Rusk, told MobiHealthNews. “This way we’re able to do that relatively quickly and relatively easily just to kind of keep tabs on folks rather than calling and having them come in for appointments on a regular basis. From day one… you want to make sure that they’re still doing what we have been having them do for a long period of time.”
Fifty patients will be part of the intervention group. They’ll be instructed to download the MOVN app on their personal device during their discharge appointment with a nurse. At that time, when the nurse gives patients rehabilitation goals like exercising a certain amount or maintaining a certain heart rate, those goals will also be entered into the app and corresponding physician dashboard. The nurse will also help the patient set up medication reminders.
From there, the app will track patients’ movement through the phone’s built-in accelerometer, and track medication adherence and workouts through self-reporting.
“In addition, through the app the patient can get in touch with the nurse, who will be monitoring the dashboard to see if they are continuing with their medication,” Smith said. “If not, the nurse can send a note to the person and it will come up as a text message: ‘Hey, how are you doing, I see you haven’t been taking your medication. Is there anything going on?’ Vice versa, the patient can actually text the nurse through the app and say ‘Hey, I’m feeling a little weird, didn’t know if this was normal, could you help me?’ and the nurse will be able to respond right away and ask further questions.”
At three months and six months, the 50 patients using the app and the 50 patients receiving normal post-discharge care will be evaluated for clinical measures like BMI, blood pressure, resting heart rate and stress levels. They’ll also assess psycho-social outcomes like depression, self-assessment of health, and how in control patients feel of their health.
The estimated completion date for the study is August 2017.
“We want to make everything easy for patients as well as the clinicians. We really want patients to be healthy,” Smith said. “So if things work out well, we would like to do an extension of this study and perhaps have a bigger number of study participants just to see how it goes over time and with larger numbers to see if it scales up. And then from there we can talk to everyone involved to see if there’s an opportunity for all patients.”