On 3rd February, NHS leaders wrote open letters to all the diabetes technology providers encouraging them to work together to ensure that it is easy for people living with diabetes and healthcare teams to view diabetes data in a consistent way, and advising against the use of separate proprietary data platforms.
Professor Partha Kar is the National Specialty Advisor, Diabetes at NHS England, and Simon Eccles is Chief Clinical Information Officer for Health and Care and Deputy CEO of NHSX (the Government unit focused on the digital transformation of health and social care.)
Working together they have set out their expectation that ‘diabetes monitoring devices must be capable of providing patients and clinicians data in an open and standardised format’.
‘They also highlighted that ‘having interoperability features is a strongly desirable characteristic’.
Hilary Nathan, Director of Policy and Communications at JDRF in the UK said: “We’re delighted to see this clear message from NHS leaders – standardising the way people living with type 1 diabetes can use their data alongside their healthcare teams makes absolute sense and will help people to make choices about the devices that best suit their needs without having to worry about learning to navigate new data platforms too.
“In 2017, we launched the JDRF Open Protocol Initiative to encourage diabetes device companies to ensure their devices could be used interoperably, which we see as a vital step towards ensuring that people living with type 1 can make the best choices for themselves both today and in the future, as more apps and controllers are developed and become widely available. So we are delighted to see this intervention from NHS England and NHSX, and hope it will help focus minds on overcoming any challenges in making full device interoperability a reality.”