SME of the Week: Ampersand Health

SME of the Week, Ampersand Health, today has launched their app for people living with Inflammatory Bowel Disesase to manage their health remotely. The Ampersand team have given us the latest update on My IBD Care…

Ampersand Health is a social purpose company, founded by doctors and patients to improve the health and happiness of people with long term inflammatory conditions.

The company is pioneering the development of behavioural- and data-science based digital therapy for people with immune-mediated diseases like Crohn’s, Colitis, Arthritis and Psoriasis.

Today, Ampersand Health has announced the launch of a mobile application developed to help some of those most at-risk during the COVID-19 crisis to improve their self-care.

My IBD Care’s Lifestyle and Wellbeing courses can be used long-term to help people have more control over their lives with Crohn’s or Colitis. Engaging with these expert-led courses could help in prolonging patient’s periods of remission, as well as keeping flare-ups at bay.

The 2017 Crohn’s & Colitis UK’s Quality of Life survey reported that 47% of those with Crohn’s or Colitis say their condition impacts their mental health. Even for those in remission, pain and fatigue are consistently reported, which can have negative knock-on effects for an individual’s sleep and exercise habits.

“At a time where individuals on immunosuppressants, steroids or biologic medicines are advised to self-isolate, this digital therapeutic is a timely tool for maintaining health and happiness at home,” said Dr Bu’ Hayee, Consultant Gastroenterologist at King’s College Hospital and co-founder at Ampersand.

“The fact that I can now direct my patients to My IBD Care to help them maintain their health and wellbeing, is very powerful,” adds Dr Gareth Parkes, Consultant Gastroenterologist at Bart’s Health and co-founder at Ampersand. “Importantly, the courses are evidence-based and led by credible experts, and patients benefit from a library of educational content from the national charity as well as a host of tracking and reminder options”.

During these unusual times, My IBD Care helps healthcare systems focus on short term threats, by helping patients address the psychological burden of isolation whilst supporting them to self-manage. Hospitals can also offer the app to patients, enabling remote monitoring and helping the at-risk to stay out of hospital safely.

Ana Ibarra, IBD Nurse Specialist at The Royal London said: “This app transforms the support available for people living with IBD, giving them access to so much guidance on lifestyle and psychological topics that we often don’t have time to discuss in clinic. It couldn’t come at a better time for the long-term wellbeing of my patients.”

Sara Nelson, Programme Director at DigitalHealth.London Accelerator, said: “My IBD Care can provide informative and reassuring resources for people living with Crohn’s or Colitis during this turbulent time. Ampersand Health has taken a step back to look at what people living with these conditions really want and need, and have used this to create a patient-centric resource which meets those needs.”

Nader Alaghband, founder and CEO of Ampersand Health said: “The DigitalHealth.London Accelerator programme has supported us in engaging with experts in the field and in refining our product to meet the needs of healthcare systems.”