- Onduo’s Virtual Diabetes Clinic is paving the way for people living with type 2 diabetes to virtually access endocrinologists in 49 states, including the latest expansion to Delaware, alongside a suite of diabetes management tools.
- Onduo is working toward establishing best practices for the virtual care experience by building relationship-based, personalized care.
This Diabetes Awareness Month, Onduo’s virtual diabetes clinic announced expansion to Delaware, the 49th and final state in the continental U.S. For the past two years, Onduo has been building and expanding access to a network of endocrinologists who can support people living with type 2 diabetes in making suggested medication and lifestyle changes, including for individuals living in rural communities that do not have endocrinologists nearby.
“We’ve been quietly focused on doing this right – hiring the best people to build the best products and care services designed and centered around each individual,” said Dr. Josh Riff, MD, CEO of Onduo, LLC. “It’s time to offer convenient access to care and to help people living with chronic conditions, like diabetes, get the personalized services they need and deserve.”
Launched in early 2018, Onduo’s preliminary results demonstrate lifestyle and medication changes are necessary to improve clinical outcomes and could potentially improve quality of life and prevent long-term complications. As part of its program, Onduo also offers support from diabetes educators and health coaches as well as a growing number of evidence-based wearables, such as continuous glucose monitoring systems (CGMs).
Added Dr. Riff, “It’s exciting to have it all come together and build a program that can make a sustainable difference in people’s lives.”
Building an Empathetic Virtual Care Experience
At the forefront of the virtual clinic movement in diabetes, Onduo provides access to board-certified endocrinologists employed by Onduo Professionals, P.C. The team uses a relationship-based care model to enable actionable and meaningful engagements by addressing the barriers and beliefs that impede behavior change.
“We’ve seen patients with some of the most complex cases of type 2 diabetes experience life-changing results because we put the relationship with the patient at the forefront of our work,” said Dr. Ronald Dixon, MD, CEO and President of Onduo Professionals, P.C. “We’re focused on building true partnerships with the members of our program and their providers. This helps enable sustainable clinical outcomes through access to information and a team of supporting providers and specialists.”
In addition to garnering registrations and licenses necessary to provide care in the 49 states, Onduo has made early and extensive investments in building a virtual diabetes clinic. This includes integration of CGMs and other devices, training and expansion of the multidisciplinary care team, and building tools to coordinate care with primary care physicians (PCPs).
The Use of CGMs for Type 2 Diabetes
Onduo has leveraged its multi-state clinical and durable medical equipment (DME) infrastructure to virtually prescribe and ship CGMs to members across the country. Use of a CGM supported by Onduo’s remote care team allows people to gain helpful insights into behaviors that affect their glucose levels, such as eating habits or exercise patterns. Unlike traditional fingerstick blood glucose meters (BGMs), CGMs are quickly emerging as the standard of care with sensors that give real-time continuous glucose readings1 every five minutes. In a recent survey of 330 Onduo CGM wearers, 95% reported improvement in self-care behaviors such as eating healthily or exercising.
About Diabetes in the U.S.
According to the CDC, there are 30 million people living with diabetes in the U.S., with medical costs of $327 billion dollars.2 Ninety-five percent (~95%) of the diabetes population is comprised of people living with type 2, a chronic condition that can have devastating complications, including blindness, kidney failure, heart disease, and loss of toes, feet, or legs.3 Diabetes remains the 7th leading cause of death in the U.S.
The Growing Shortage of Endocrinologists
Most individuals living with type 2 diabetes do not have access to an endocrinologist and only see their PCP an average of 17-24 minutes per year for support.4 For individuals who do have access to an endocrinologist, the average wait time for an appointment can be up to 3 to 6 months.5
“PCPs and their patients both need and deserve access to additional support in between physician visits, and our virtual model provides a convenient access point,” added Dr. Dixon.
While the incidence and prevalence of endocrine disorders, like diabetes, continues to rise as the baby boomer population ages, the American Board of Internal Medicine cites fewer than 7,000 licensed endocrinologists in the U.S.6 and current estimates suggest a shortage of more than 1,500 endocrinologists in the workforce.7 In rural areas, where diabetes prevalence is ~17% higher than in urban areas8, one in two people live more than 20 miles from the nearest endocrinologist.9
Virtual clinics are poised to offer a solution to the growing shortage of endocrinologists by enabling specialty physicians to advise and support PCPs while reaching and engaging more people managing the disease.
Onduo is a virtual clinic dedicated to people with type 2 diabetes. Onduo’s on-demand access to best-in-class diabetes specialists and integrated technology allows members to leverage proven behavior change methodologies and a data-enhanced standard of care. Founded in 2016 as a joint venture between Verily (a subsidiary of Alphabet focused on life sciences and healthcare) and Sanofi, Onduo is dedicated to bringing the most up-to-date care to people living with diabetes everywhere.
1If glucose readings do not match symptoms or expectations, users are instructed to use a blood glucose meter to make diabetes treatment decisions