An augmented reality app to help people with type 2 diabetes and high blood pressure manage their medication in Australia is to be developed.
Augmented reality (AR) comprises technology that generates real world data and then provides digital information to overlay new data on top of it.
Dr Alireza Ahmadvand, who is a research scholar from the Queensland University of Technology (QUT), and colleagues are investigating how best to use augmented reality to help people who require a variety of medication, including people with diabetes.
Ahmadvand said: "A person with diabetes sometimes has to take, on average, eight medications at the same time including blood sugar-lowering medications, cholesterol-lowering medications, aspirin, anti-depressants/anxiolytics or medications for weight management.
"Keeping track of all the advice, understanding it, and being able to ask the right questions are major challenges. AR brings the possibility of using smartphones to give information on specific medications in a form appropriate to each person's level of understanding in a convenient and timely way."
Ahmadvand added that compliance is often low and medications may not be taken on time among people who are required to take multiple drugs, but the use of smartphones enables new ways to deliver healthcare and help people manage health conditions.
The smartphone app will also give people the opportunity to call or message diabetes helplines, should they have a question about their medication.
"[Patients] receive a lot of high-level professional advice but at the point of having to take the medication they are alone, it is then that our solution will step in.
"The app can give the possibility of calling, messaging or direct contact to credible diabetes helplines, if they are in doubt as to what to do if they have forgotten something about their medication or its side effects.
"We hope this will decrease the complexity and increase compliance with medications for people managing both type 2 diabetes and hypertension by improving understanding of their conditions."