A new iPad app developed helps educate patients about different options available for colon cancer screening and also allows them to order their preferred test. The findings of a randomized controlled trial are published in Annals of Internal Medicine.
‘Colon cancer screening has doubled due to the education provided by the iPad app about various screening options.’Screening for colon cancer has been proven to reduce mortality, yet more than one third of eligible Americans remain unscreened.
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Researchers from Wake Forest School of Medicine sought to determine if a digital health intervention delivered via iPad app could increase screening rates.
Researchers enrolled 450 patients in primary care who were due for colon cancer screening and agreed to participate in the study.
The participants were randomly assigned to colon cancer education through the iPad app or usual care.
Patients using the iPad app were educated about different types of screening tests and could order the test they wanted.
Patients who received education and reminders through the app were twice as likely to undergo screening compared to patients in the usual care group (30 percent versus 15 percent, respectively).
They suggest that improvements in colon cancer screening will more likely arrive incrementally from compound interventions that involve technology, education, and behavior.