Me & Mine Health - An Exciting New App

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Healthcare systems around the world, including here in the UK, increasingly assume an engaged, aware, health-literate patient capable of making “informed choices” about treatment options. But doctors are not always trained in how to communicate effectively with patients and with the average GP consultation lasting just 10 minutes1 they frequently don’t have the time either. Many patients too are not able to make scientific evaluations of complex choices. Consequently, patients are often confused about the choices they are increasingly expected to make and unaware of the importance of adherence to their doctor's recommendations. This can lead to missed appointments for important tests, screens and vaccinations and poor adherence with medication, resulting in the development of potentially avoidable events (e.g. heart attack, stroke, cancer and infections) and complications to pre-existing conditions (e.g. eye, kidney and foot problems in patients with diabetes).

Me & Mine Health is an iPhone app designed to help each individual keep track of and make sense of their own care and that of their loved ones. Essentially it strives to make “patient informed choice” work better. The user simply enters a limited amount of personal information such as date of birth, gender and the date of diagnosis of any medical conditions, and a personalised schedule of tests, assessments, screens and vaccinations is generated based upon NHS guidelines. However, as guidelines are written for populations and not individuals with their unique set of personal circumstances, these schedules can easily be added to, deleted or modified in-line with GP recommendations or personal preference in accordance with the principle of shared decision making – “No decision about me without me”. To aid the decision making process, comprehensive, patient-friendly educational materials are provided sourced from NHS Choices.

Me and Mine Health is currently configured for iPhone and is available on the App Store. It has also recently been approved for inclusion in the NHS Choices Health Apps Library meaning that it has been reviewed by the NHS to ensure that it’s relevant to people living in England, complies with data protection laws, uses trusted sources of information and above all, is clinically safe. Trials of the app amongst patients attending GP practices are also just getting underway. The first update to the app will be released shortly incorporating planned changes to recommended vaccination schedules covering rotavirus for babies, meningitis C booster for teenagers, shingles for the elderly and minor revisions suggested by users. If you’d like to test the app and are willing to provide feedback on its ease of use and usefulness, please just email support@meandminehealth.com and you’ll be sent a promotional code allowing the app to be downloaded for free.

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