Strategic Forum: Self-care, Technology & Digitalization

Chair: Peter Schwarz, Professor of Prevention and Care of Diabetes, University of Dresden, Germany

Member: Bastian Hauck, Cajsa Lindberg, Rita Forde, Rogério Ribeiro, Kostas Makrilakis, Tadej Battelino, Michael Joubert, Niko Louris, Robert Schwenk, Kuuno Vaher, Phillipe Domeyer, Colin Dayan, Simona de Portu, Henk Veeze


Medical technology for diabetes has advanced rapidly. The gap between guidelines and clinical reality is striking when viewed in the light of the pace of advances in technology. There is a mismatch between the expressed needs and wishes of people with diabetes (and their caregivers) and both the manufacturers of medical devices and the regulatory agencies.

People with diabetes have been turning to new ways to find the support they need for self-care, outside the traditional clinical care systems. They are increasingly designing their own innovative solutions, particularly in the area of artificial pancreas closed-loop systems. The EUDF has been in dialogue with the various stakeholders in the diabetes technology field (people with diabetes, basic and clinical researchers, clinicians, software experts, Med Tech Europe). 

Objectives & Directions for Solutions

Continously improve and innovate diabetes care, driven by policy action

  • Open the dialogue on diabetes technology between the people with diabetes, manufacturers and regulators
  • Optimise the use of technology, digital health and innovative treatments to support self-care by people with diabetes, to prevent complications and support quality of life
  • Foster the introduction of innovative approaches and broader evidence for diabetes care into policy, and policy into action
  • Guide the relevant funding agencies on the focus and priorities for research
  • Prepare recommendations for the optimal use of technology & digital health to support self-care and provide guidance for regional/national translation

The Promise of Digital Tools: A roadmap for apps

Digital technologies are driving significant changes in healthcare, offering new solutions to assist in preventing, diagnosing, and treating chronic diseases. Diabetes is ideally suited to benefit from these types of digital tools, given it is a largely a self-managed condition, and especially data-driven. 

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Viewpoint Story by Peter Schwarz

Peter Schwarz, chair of the EUDF Strategic Forum on Self-care, Technology & Digitalization, describes the disparity between the development speed of digital tools and technologies for patients and a lack of legislation and knowledge to embed these tools in patient pathways. The Forum is therefore focused on providing evidence, encouragement and guidance on how to create standards that can be scaled across European countries. Their dream: the digital empowerment of diabetes patients and their carers.  

EFSD and EUDF Digitalisation in Diabetes Care
Research Grant

EUDF and EFSD have established a Digitalisation in Diabetes Care Research Grant to ensure the translation of research into policy actions.

Interesting Literature

Enabling self-efficacy through digital technologies and innovative therapies
EFPIA Round Table in Germany - September 2019

Digital Health: hope for diabetes in an uncertain and changing world?
EUDF Symposium at the virtual EASD Annual Meeting - September 2020

Digital Diabetes Index - Enhancing diabetes care through digital tools and services
November 2020

Digital Diabetes Index - Workbook
November 2020

A Vision for digitally enabled diabetes care in Europe (MedTech Europe) September 2020