Digital Health Coach Assists Patients with Parkinson’s Disease


Patients suffering from Parkinson’s disease (PD), as well as their caregivers and families, can utilize a new app called a “digital health coach” for continuous support as they face the challenges of the condition.  

One such app, the PD Coach, made by UCB and Verint Systems, Inc., uses artificial intelligence to learn about a patient’s specific needs. The app is equipped with a conversational, virtual health assistant named “April” that conducts evidence-based conversations to actively communicate with patients about the disease. The app can adjust to understand the language and vocabulary of patients with speech or dexterity difficulties.   

The PD Coach contains general knowledge about Parkinson's Disease and can perform diagnosis, journaling, symptom tracking, and disease progression, and provide information about patient support groups and events. The app consistently increases its knowledge base and customizes support based on the unique needs of each patient. 

“We designed the PD Coach to address specific challenges that Parkinson’s patients and their caregivers may face,” said Mike Davis, Head of the U.S. Neurology Patient Value Unit at UCB. “With insights from patients on the challenges they face with disease management, April was created as more than a resource to offer information. April is designed to build a relationship with the patient and help deliver what patients value when it comes to their care.” 


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