Medical Devices and Healthcare IT

Prenatal care app reduces doctor visits

03 May 2019

Source: BabyscriptsSource: Babyscripts

An app, called Babyscripts, from George Washington University (GW) helps expectant parents track their health and reduce the number of times they visit their doctor while maintaining patient and provider satisfaction.

According to the GW team, there has been little research done on the effectiveness of current prenatal care. The team wanted to reevaluate prenatal care for low-risk pregnancies. Their goal was to reduce the burden on patients and the healthcare system.

Past studies have shown that mobile technology can improve disease management. A December 2018 study proved that app-based therapy works for patients with depression. An app released in February 2019 helps cancer patients through their treatment. The GW team believed that apps could also help in prenatal care.

Babyscripts provides expectant parents with educational content. It also remotely monitors the mother’s blood pressure and weight to look for warning signs of hypertension or abnormal weight gain. The app isn’t just for pregnancy. After birth, the app gives information on nutrition and breastfeeding.

People eligible for Babyscripts are women with low-risk pregnancies, between 18 and 40 years old, with no history of hypertension, diabetes, renal disease, collagen vascular disease, maternal substance abuse or other conditions that would put a pregnancy at risk.

The team gave 88 patients with low-risk pregnancies the Babyscripts app. The patients who used the app reported that they saw their OBGYN an average of 7.8 times. Patients who didn’t use the app saw their OBGYN an average of 10.2 times.

Researchers say that they need to conduct more research before they can determine a connection between prenatal apps and maternal and fetal outcomes.

A paper on Babyscripts was published in JMIR in Health and uHealth.

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