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Design Rx:Digital Medicine Combats Chronic Disease

For the first time in history, more people—3 out of every 4 Americans—will die from a preventable chronic disease than an infectious one.

Why aren’t they being prevented? Because replacing habits that contribute to disease with those that promote health typically requires education, guidance, support, and accountability. In other words: Change is hard.

But it is possible. Behavioral therapies have been proven effective at enabling people to reduce their risk of disease. A prime example is the Diabetes Prevention Program (DPP), which had a remarkable 58% success rate.

Unfortunately, programs like the DPP are expensive and difficult to scale.

Luckily, for the first time in history, technological advances including web, mobile, and connected devices, make it possible to deliver behavioral medicine digitally to millions of people.

But how do we make millions of people want to ‘take their digital medicine’? By using design as our coated pill.

This panel of digital health innovators, led by SeanDuffy of Omada Health, will provide real-world examples of how integrating behavioral medicine, technology, and design can help conquer the problem of chronic disease.

Additional Supporting Materials


  1. How can new technologies transform and enhance traditional behavior change therapy?
  2. How can design work like a coated pill to help the (behavioral) medicine go down?
  3. How can we make achieving healthy behavior change affordable for millions of people?
  4. What is currently preventing doctors from prescribing online-based behavior change programs and how can they be overcome?
  5. How can digital therapeutics help people maintain positive behavior change for years and decades after a program has ended?



Colleen Irish, Senior Associate, Tier One Partners

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