The Friday Interview: Sebastian Gaede, MD at MyTherapy
HI SEBASTIAN, COULD YOU PLEASE EXPLAIN WHAT MYTHERAPY IS?
MyTherapy is an app that helps people manage their health and improve their health outcomes – currently available for Android and iOS devices. Initially, we had a strong focus on medication management, since many of our users take tablets and pills or use inhalers regularly. With MyTherapy we make it easy for them to never miss a dose, even with complex treatment regimes.
For most of our users the app has evolved from a medication reminder into a comprehensive tool for managing their entire treatment plan by tracking measurements such as blood pressure, weight and blood glucose levels. Also, keeping track of well-being and symptoms has been vital for many. For example, some of our patients suffering from depression use the built-in health journal to understand how lifestyle decisions and medications impact their well-being. This data compilation and tracking can also be used for focused discussions with healthcare providers. Most importantly, MyTherapy lives up to medical standards and we’ve seen vast improvements from clinical studies not only in adherence to medications, but also in patients’ well-being.
HOW DOES MYTHERAPY MAKE MONEY?
The responsible use of medication is not only important for the patient but also other stakeholders in the healthcare system. We partner with hospitals and pharmaceutical companies since for these partners it’s important that patients adhere to their treatment regimes to maximise their health outcomes. These partnerships provide the necessary tools for improvements to MyTherapy’s development and growth, while implementing the strictest measures to fully protecting our user’s privacy.
WHAT’S COMING NEXT FROM MYTHERAPY ?
We just launched our so-called ‘Team’ feature, where family members can also take part in improving their loved-one’s adherence. Connected family members can monitor a user’s medication adherence. There is hardly a stronger reminder for someone suffering from COPD than a text message or phone call asking “Dad, have you used your inhaler?” Following the successful and highly-valued integration of family support, we are working on tools for further improving the collaboration between patients and healthcare providers. Stay tuned!
WHAT DO YOU PERSONALLY TRACK ON A DAILY BASIS?
I use MyTherapy to keep track of my weight and any medication that I have to take. What’s handy is that MyTherapy pulls my activity data from Apple Health and my Apple Watch. I also tried to track my sleep however, with small kids I wasn’t really sure whose sleep patterns I was tracking, so I stopped it for now.
LASTLY, WHAT DO YOU SEE AS THE FUTURE OF SELF QUANTIFICATION?
Three years ago self quantification was an early adopter phenomenon. For these early adopters, quantifying themselves was an end in itself. As self quantification is becoming mainstream, it offers much more than just tracking. MyTherapy is a good example of this as our users ultimately want to improve their health outcomes and well-being. To achieve this, they need to have more informed discussions with their healthcare providers and can use MyTherapy to receive reminders for their medication, keeping track of everything health related. I see this as a larger trend, no matter if you look at digital health or other verticals like home automation, people want to make better, more informed decisions! Apps and devices have a great opportunity to ultimately empower users, as long as privacy does not suffer.