Mobile Prenatal App Shown to Reduce in-Person Visits During Pregnancy

Using the mobile app Babyscripts reduced in-person prenatal care visits while maintaining patient and provider satisfaction, according to research published in JMIR mHealth and uHealth by physician researchers from the George Washington University (GW).

"Prenatal care is one of the most widely utilized preventative health care services, however there is little research on the effectiveness of standard prenatal care," said Kathryn Marko, MD, first author of the paper and assistant professor of obstetrics and gynecology at the GW School of Medicine and Health Sciences. "We wanted to reevaluate the model for low-risk pregnancies and see if a mobile prenatal app could remove barriers to access and reduce the burden on patients and the health care system."

Mobile health apps have the potential to transform health care. Studies have shown mobile technology can improve disease management for diabetes self-care activities, HIV infection medication adherence, and sickle cell anemia medication adherence. The research team, led by Marko, hypothesized that mobile health apps could be just as transformative for prenatal care.

The Babyscripts app was built to deliver educational content and remotely monitor blood pressure and weight. The app gave patients information on topics like nutrition and breastfeeding, but also gave patients and providers early warnings about hypertension or abnormal weight gain, which could indicate gestational diabetes, nutritional deficiency, or edema associated with preeclampsia.

Eligible participants were women between ages 18 - 40 years and considered low-risk - a singleton pregnancy with no previous diagnosis of hypertension, diabetes, renal disease, collagen vascular disease, maternal substance abuse, or other previously documented condition that could potentially lead to a poor pregnancy outcome. A total of 88 low-risk patients were enrolled in the study. Patients who used the app saw their OBGYN an average of 7.8 times. Patients who did not use the app saw their OBGYN an average of 10.2 times. There was no statistical difference in patient or provider satisfaction in either group.

"While the results of our study were largely positive, more research is needed to determine the connection between mobile prenatal apps and maternal or fetal outcomes," said Andrew Meltzer, MD, co-author of the paper and associate professor of emergency medicine at the GW School of Medicine and Health Sciences. "There is a lot more potential for use of mobile prenatal apps for both patients and providers."

Marko KI, Ganju N, Krapf JM, Gaba ND, Brown JA, Benham JJ, Oh J, Richards LM, Meltzer AC.
A Mobile Prenatal Care App to Reduce In-Person Visits: Prospective Controlled Trial.
JMIR Mhealth Uhealth 2019;7(5):e10520. doi: 10.2196/10520.

Most Popular Now

AI-Pathway Companion Prostate Cancer fro…

AI-Pathway Companion Prostate Cancer(2), a digital companion from Siemens Healthineers to support clinical decision-making, has recently received the CE mark for use in the clinical pathway of prostate cancer, the...

Philips Launches HealthSuite System of E…

Royal Philips (NYSE: PHG, AEX: PHIA), a global leader in health technology, today announced the HealthSuite System of Engagement, an integrated, modular set of standards-based capabilities that support the development...

AI may Help Spot Newborns at Risk for Mo…

An artificial intelligence (AI) device that has been fast-tracked for approval by the Food and Drug Administration may help identify newborns at risk for aggressive posterior retinopathy of prematurity (AP-ROP)...

Best of Breed: Start with Data in Open P…

Better is attending this year's Digital Health Rewired conference and exhibition at Olympia London alongside Taunton and Somerset NHS Foundation Trust, which is using its open platform to develop an...

Highland Marketing is Sponsoring the Caf…

Highland Marketing will be returning to Digital Health Rewired this year, where it will be sponsoring the café that has been created with an expanded exhibition area. Digital Health Rewired launched...

International Scientific Symposium DigiH…

13 November 2020, Pfarrkirchen, Germany DigiHealthDay @DIT-ECRI is going to be a daylong action-packed event targeting primarily academia - from established researchers, to young scientists and students. Following the theme "How...

Siemens Healthineers Introduces Teamplay…

Siemens Healthineers announces market introduction of the teamplay digital health platform. With the teamplay digital health platform Siemens Healthineers paves the way for healthcare providers' digital transformation - facilitating easy...

Digital Heart Model will Help Predict Fu…

In recent times, researchers have increasing found that the power of computers and artificial intelligence is enabling more accurate diagnosis of a patient's current heart health and can provide an...

Fighting Hand Tremors: First comes AI, t…

Robots hold promise for a large number of people with neurological movement disorders severely affecting the quality of their lives. Now researchers have tapped artificial intelligence techniques to build an...