Electronic Diabetes Management System Replaces Paper Insulin Chart: Improved Quality in Diabetes Inpatient Care Processes Due to Digitalization

Publication from Health
Digital Healthcare Solutions

Kopanz J, Lichtenegger KM, Koenig C, Libiseller A, Mader JK, Donsa K , Truskaller T {], Bauer N, Hahn B, Sendlhofer G, Beck P, Höll B, Sinner F, Feichtner F, Pieber TR

Journal of diabetes science and technology , 3/2021


Background: GlucoTab, an electronic diabetes management system (eDMS), supports healthcare professionals (HCPs) in inpatient blood glucose (BG) management at point-of-care and was implemented for the first time under routine conditions in a regional hospital to replace the paper insulin chart.


Method: To investigate quality of the eDMS for inpatients with type 2 diabetes mellitus a monocentric retrospective before-after evaluation was conducted. We compared documentation possibilities by assessing a blank paper chart vs the eDMS user interface. Further quality aspects were compared by assessing filled-in paper charts (n = 106) vs filled-in eDMS documentation (n = 241). HCPs (n = 59) were interviewed regarding eDMS satisfaction.


Results: The eDMS represented an improvement of documentation possibilities by offering a more structured and comprehensive user interface compared to the blank paper chart. The number of good diabetes days averaged to a median value of four days in both groups (paper chart: 4.38 [0-7] vs eDMS: 4.38 [0-7] days). Median daily BG was 170 (117-297) mg/dL vs 168 (86-286) mg/dL and median fasting BG was 152 (95-285) mg/dL vs 145 (69-333) mg/dL, and 0.1% vs 0.4% BG values <54 mg/dL were documented. Diabetes documentation quality improved when using eDMS, for example, documentation of ordered BG measurement frequency (1% vs 100%) and ordered BG targets (0% vs 100%). HCPs stated that by using eDMS errors could be prevented (74%), and digital support of work processes was completed (77%). Time saving was noted by 8 out of 11 HCPs and estimated at 10-15 minutes per patient day by two HCPs.


Conclusions: The eDMS completely replaced the paper chart, showed comparable glycemic control, was positively accepted by HCPs, and is suitable for inpatient diabetes management.

Keywords: clinical decision support; diabetes; diabetes therapy; digitalization; hospital; treatment quality.