Tuesday, May 31, 2016
Two out of three Americans with invasive cancer survive at least five years after diagnosis, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). While significant developments in cancer research have led to more cancer patients being cured, even more are able to live with their ongoing conditions. The disease is now frequently managed as a chronic illness requiring long-term surveillance and, in some cases, maintenance treatment. As a chronic illness, however, an urgent need exists for patients and families to effectively manage their own care.
iManageCancer, a collaborative project under the leadership of the Fraunhofer Institute for Biomedical Engineering (IBMT) in Germany, is meeting this challenge by empowering patients and relatives through a new ICT-based self-management service platform for mobile devices. Supported by eight partners from five European countries, the project seeks to help people better manage cancer throughout all phases of the care continuum in collaboration with their healthcare providers. It is incorporating the latest in gamification from Promotion Software to create intelligent, fun ways to enable those with chronic illnesses to manage their lives in a new, constructive manner.
The platform offers decision-making support to help patients make informed choices about treatment options. It provides users an easy interface to track the health and disease status of therapies as well as the results of clinical interventions and tests. It also has space for users to maintain a health diary on personal clinical observations, such as the side effects of various therapies, and then offers individualized advice on how to manage such unpleasant side effects like pain, nausea, and fatigue.
iManageCancer also serves as an interactive psycho-emotional health assessment instrument for the monitoring of a patient's current psychological and physiological health status, including physical health deterioration and social withdrawal. Based on this assessment, the platform will give personalized tips, for example, coping strategies. Looking ahead, the project's partners hope to incorporate an instrument to analyze data from the anonymized clinical information in order to advance public health research on a whole.
An initial version of the system for clinical testing is expected to be released in the last quarter of this year. For further information, click here.To watch videos about the project, click here.