Big data and diabetes: improving adherence rates for medication

Big data and diabetes

Diabetes is a major public health issue affecting more than 400 million people worldwide and resulting in 1.5 million deaths each year, according to the World Health Organization (WHO). With almost 9% of the world’s adult population now having diabetes, WHO’s recent Global Report on Diabetes called for more action to improve the management and treatment of the condition.


Key to successful diabetes control are the effective monitoring of glycemic goals, adherence to diet and exercise programs, and adherence to medication.

However studies show that glycemic goals are achieved by less than 50% of people with diabetes, with adherence rates for medication at between 62% and 64% for people prescribed insulin.



Improving diabetes control


To help improve these statistics, Sanofi is investing in Big Data and working in partnership with leading data analysts to help doctors and people with diabetes better manage the condition. 

To complement its range of adherence-based motivational and reminder programs, Sanofi is working on a range of new initiatives. They include the development of tracking software to help general practitioners monitor the health of their patients in real time, and to identify any problems with adherence as they arise.


Via telemedicine – the electronic, high-tech sharing of information – there is also a focus on ensuring both the person with diabetes and their doctor has access to data to help promote more proactive, patient-centric diabetes control.



Worldwide collaborations


Sanofi is collaborating with world-leading research institutes to help progress these initiatives.

For example, the company is working with the Duke Clinical Research Institute (DCRI) and the Center for Assessment Technology and Continuous Health (CATCH) in the US on tools to help predict how people with type 2 diabetes will adhere to their medication.

These projects will also work on building models to predict the efficacy of diabetes medications, as well as to predict the risk of disease complications.


Sanofi’s Patient-Centricity Unit has already been working in partnership with people with diabetes to develop innovative patient-focused education programs and workshops. These are based around ‘Design Thinking’, a technique that encourages the sharing of ideas and experiences to help solve problems relating to diabetes management.



It is hoped that these projects will combine to result in the development of models that can be tailored to specific patient groups to help maximize insulin adherence, leading to better overall diabetes control.

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