The Coronavirus pandemic and nation-wide lockdown has a long term impact on human behaviour. The last four months has a direct impact on adoption of new technologies in every sphere of life including medicine. Madras Diabetes Research Foundation and Dr. Mohan’s Diabetes Specialities Centre conduct a research study to assess the effects of the lockdown on the adoption of new technologies and changes in diabetes in type 2 diabetes patients.
The research finds that the patients prefer to meet their doctors in person than consult them over telephone. The result of the study also states that despite the lockdown, the control of diabetes amongst patients actually increased during the past months.
The COVID-19 lockdown and associated restrictions have created a need for consultation of patients with chronic conditions such as diabetes through telemedicine facilities.
The study showed that while patients sought out medical consultation during the lockdown period, only a marginal number of patients preferred to consult their doctors through the telemedicine route; though effective, the overall acceptance of telemedicine facilities remains suboptimal among
patients. The study also found that despite all the hardships, the increased attention to health during the lockdown had actually improved the control of diabetes. Patients reported an increase in self-monitoring of blood glucose and improvement in glycemic control. The COVID-19 pandemic and the subsequent lockdown have not adversely affected metabolic control in diabetic patients.
Commenting on the findings, Dr. V .Mohan – Chairman and Chief Diabetologist of Dr Mohan’s Diabetes Specialities Centre said, “The doctor-patient relationship in India is a trusted bond and patients tend to feel safer and comforted when they meet doctors in-person. Besides, many patients
here will opt to visit the same doctor for an ailment like diabetes and in many cases this is a lifelong relationship”.
Dr.R.M. Anjana, Managing Director, DMDSC added,“Doctors too are familiar with the habits and case history of all their regular patients – a crucial factor in ensuring the patient’s wellbeing. But in emergencies like these, greater accessibility and acceptance of technology could help patients
maintain better contact with their physicians. This is important for both doctor and patient safety”.