Digital Health Done Right: Glooko

April 19, 2017
Julia Zehel -

Digital Health Done Right is a Redox Blog Series that shines a light on a member of our interoperable network. We believe in what our partners are doing and want to share their stories and outcomes with you.

As we’ve wrote about before, diabetes management is a quickly-growing area of focus because, unfortunately, it’s relevant to so many people around the world.

For years, managing diabetes has meant pricking your finger, having a meter record your blood glucose level, and administering insulin. Because medical device technology was so nascent at the time these devices started to become available, their functionality didn’t really extend much beyond that—and neither did their insights.

Diabetes management, modernized

Glooko is changing all that with a FDA-cleared diabetes management application that takes an impressively holistic approach to how people live with the disease. Glooko looked at traditional methods and realized that effectively managing diabetes requires far more than just a blood glucose level, because that reading is interconnected with how much you exercise, what kind of foods you eat, what medications you take, and other lifestyle choices that directly influence your health.

This sounds straightforward enough, but Glooko’s platform is impressively developed and streamlined. Their medication tracker, for instance, logs and tracks all of your previous medications, making accurately recording them incredibly efficient if you’re on a set routine. Their Reminder function pops up on your phone if you enable push notifications, and can log your actions into your Glooko Logbook with one click.

Another valuable feature is Glooko’s extensive food database, containing over 200,000 items to add to your daily food intake page. This is very useful for tracking how many carbs you ate that day, which ultimately plays a role in your blood glucose levels.

Cohesive management for everyone

Glooko realized that many people who have and manage their diabetes are likely older people who won’t be thrilled at the thought of abandoning their routine to adopt a new technology device to manage their condition. Glooko made sure that their customers could continue using all the devices, meters, insulin pumps, and CGMs that they’re used to by allowing external collected data to be downloaded and synced with their application.

This is great if you’re someone who uses tracking apps like Fitbit, Strava, Moves, or iHealth, as you can integrate them with Glooko and have all your lifestyle habits recorded in one platform. This functionality is extremely beneficial when it comes time to aggregate data into reports that can be shared with clinical care teams—the more data recorded, the more holistic and accurate the assessment of your health.

Glooko also has a helpful function called “Glooko Personal Advisor” that provides insight into your behavioral patterns and offers advice to improve areas that need some help. This functionality (and every aspect of this platform) was developed and overseen by Glooko’s four on-staff Medical Advisors, each of whom are passionate about researching and analyzing diabetes data to improve the lives of people who live with it. Developing this platform with doctors who have a complete understanding of the medicine and data behind diabetes management allows users to feel confident when the Personal Advisor suggests altering a behavior pattern, because it isn’t just some best-guess suggestion or insight—it’s coming from experts.

We mentioned earlier that Glooko can generate reports to be shared with clinicians and care teams, which is (in our opinion), the coolest function of the application, because just like a blood glucose reading, information doesn’t exist in a vacuum—you need more than just raw data in order to gain value from numbers, you need human insight and perspective.

Glooko can run reports on blood glucose averages, exercise information, food intake, and insulin data to produce statistics and graphs that can be reviewed by patients and care teams. This eliminates the clunky chore of logging and recording all these statistics by hand and bringing them with you to the doctor’s office, where doctors would need to manually enter the information (or might not even bother to at all). Talk about an improvement.

Digital Health Done Right

With a few clicks, Glooko provides every person involved in diabetes management with a deeper and more meaningful understanding of how the disease impacts your life and, more importantly and nuanced, how your life impacts the disease. 

We think Glooko is one of the most impressive digital health applications out there. They’re taken one of the most common and disruptive ailments and leveraged real medical knowledge to create a platform that makes managing diabetes more streamlined, efficient, and cohesive. That’s a truly impressive feat, and we’re proud to have them in our network.

If you’d like some more information about Glooko, click here to check out their website.

Come back next week when we spotlight another member of the Redox Network who bridges the gap between technology and modern medicine.

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