Mango Health

Disease Category:
Target Audience:

Acceptable
Clinical Effectiveness
3
Functionality
4
Usability
5
74
Version: 3.1.7
Developer: Mango Health
Review Date: 2016-04-17
Cost: Free

 

Overall App Summary:

Mango Health is a well designed app to engage users in the daily tracking of their medications with potential rewards for adherence. The app is highly engaging in this area. It has more functions currently available on the Android version that allows the user to track other health habits, currently outside the scope of this review. The limiting factor for recommending this app is that none of the data is sharable to others, which is a key to keep in mind if recommending this app for use. As a singular product to help patients engage in their own health, it appears to work with the limited data provided by Mango Health, though will be of no benefit to providers/caregivers seeking to track users adherence rates. The information provided by the app is top notch with the use of data from Wolters Kluwer (i.e. Lexicomp). The data shared by this app with third parties is present, and users that seek to use the gift/reward system will more likely than not shared with other third parties or advertisers with Mango Health.

 

App’s Intended Use:

Mango Health Medication Reminder and Pill Reminder aims to engage patients in their daily management of their medication regimen. The app utilizes personalized drug information and gamification techniques and rewards to help encourage the user to routinely utilize the app and stay on track with their medication.

 

Who’s this app most useful for?

Mango Health’s app is aimed at patients who are looking to be rewarded for actively recording their medication adherence. The app allows users to ‘level up’ after recording data over a set of time in which they gain points, that can then be redeemed (e.g. gift cards). The app is also useful for patients seeking to utilize an app with high level drug information and drug interaction alerts. This app is targeted at users seeking to help themselves with their medications, and not to share such data with others, and as such stands as a stand-alone platform.

 

How should one use it?

This app would be beneficial for patients who like to be rewarded for their activities that improve their health, namely medication adherence. The app will be beneficial for patients with some motivation, however, the app is not beneficial if a provider wants to recommend an app that they can see such data (as it is currently not shareable).

However, depending on the device being used, the current app version on Google OS devices (i.e. Android) is currently integrated with Google Fit, with more features available (not currently covered in this review), including BP tracking, weight, water intake, etc. to encourage healthy habits or behaviors. These features are not yet integrated with iOS.

 

Why should anyone use the app? Is the mobile app clinically relevant?

This app is beneficial for patients looking for a personalized medication reminder coach. Currently, the literature has mixed results on the nature of medication reminder apps and outcomes, and Mango Health has no current published studies on it’s patient health impact.

 

Is there any published evidence that the app actually works?

No, based on current literature searches. However, the developer has stated they have finished a one-year clinical study based at 3 US integrated managed care systems that showed an increase in medication adherence.

 

Regulatory Compliance

Not FDA cleared, but exempt under MMA guidance — enforcement discretion.

 

What is the most important/ desirable feature of the app?

Currently, the iOS version of the app is primarily concentrated on medication adherence. The features of the app are geared with a gamification mindset to get uses to engage with the app daily. By leveling up after gaining points, the user will be entered into weekly raffles to help encourage further rewards.

The one key feature is the drug information database is powered by Lexicomp by Wolters Kluwer, a trusted drug information database.

The one large lacking feature of this app is that when recording medications it lacks the ability to input the drug dose amount (e.g. how many grams) and only the medication name. For a singular user this may suffice, but changes in medications and reconciliation could be difficult if a patient is trying to remember which different doses of medication to take over the course of a week. A clinical scenario I can think of is a diuretic regimen of differing doses throughout the week (Furosemide 40mg MWF, Furosemide 20mg all other days) which you cannot input into this app.

 

How does this app compare to other apps in this category?

Compared to other drug reminders apps currently available on the market, this app is primarily with the patient in mind. It is not designed to share data (lacks those features) and rather

 

How is the app’s usability?

The app has an outstanding design with a very professional look and feel. It is easy to learn to use. However, it lacks the ability to input drug dose amount which could be a negative feature beyond it’s current design aspect.

Security and Privacy

Password: Not required; but option exists. Password reset is conducted via email link.
Encryption:
Data Security:
Data Sharing: States data is shared with partners (not explicit who these partners are) and to process rewards. "Yes, data is shared, though not explicit. Registration is not necessary to gain rewards, though it could be argued that in order to gain the rewards some form of personal information is exchanged. Without registration, the user recieves a 'Unique Identifier' to use the app. From the app: In connection with your participation in the Mango Gift Program, we may share your Personal Information with merchants that we have a contractual relationship with, for the purpose of redeeming and fulfilling your reward or notifying you that you have been selected as a winner of a gift (such merchants are obligated to use your Personal Information only to redeem and fulfill your reward and are obligated not to disclose it or use it for any other purposes); we may share your information, including Personal Information, with service providers who have a contractual relationship with us in connection with the operation of our site or our services (these service providers have access to your Personal Information only to perform services on our behalf and are obligated not to disclose it or use it for any other purposes);"
Regulatory Compliance:

Reviewer(s)
Timothy Aungst

Timothy Aungst, PharmD, is an assistant professor of pharmacy practice at MCPHS University. He graduated from Wilkes University Nesbitt School of Pharmacy and completed a PGY-1 Pharmacy Practice Residency at St. Luke's University Hospital, and then a Clinical Geriatric Fellowship at MCPHS University. He is passionate about the rise of technology in health care and its application to pharmacy. He has published primarily on the role of mobile technology and mHealth, and made multiple national and international presentations on those topics. He blogs at TheDigitalApothecary.com, and you can find him on Twitter @TDAungst.

Previous clinical contributor for Iodine, inc. Freelance writer for Pharmacy Times.

Editor(s)
Maulik Majmudar

Dr. Maulik Majmudar is a practicing cardiologist and Associate Director of the Healthcare Transformation Lab at Massachusetts General Hospital; and an Instructor at Harvard Medical School. He lectures at Massachusetts Institute of Technology in areas of healthcare innovation & entrepreneurship, as well as medical device design and development. Dr. Majmudar started his career as a medical student at Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine, completed resident training in Internal Medicine at The Johns Hopkins Hospital, and followed by a fellowship in Cardiovascular Medicine at Brigham and Women's Hospital at Harvard Medical School. You can follow him @mmajmudar

Conflicts of Interest:

Employment: Massachusetts General Hospital and Harvard Medical School; Consultant/ Advisor: AliveCor, BioFourmis, Cardiogram, EchoSense, Facebook, HUINNO, MC10, Nokia; Ownership: BioFourmis, Cardiogram, HiLabs, Quanttus; Research: EchoSense, GE Healthcare, MIT.

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