Wireless project aims to improve diabetes care on U.S-Mexico border

Like a powerful signal, wireless healthcare innovation in San Diego has spilled across the border to Tijuana, Mexico, to help prevent and treat diabetes.

The recently announced Dulce Wireless Tijuana project, a binational alliance of technology and healthcare organizations, is enlisting cell phones, portable computers, mobile and web applications, health worker training and consumer-focused educational content to kick off a pilot test of whether mobility can help alleviate the diabetes epidemic along the U.S.-Mexico border. The Dulce Wireless Tijuana network runs on a 3G mobile network with technology provided by San Diego-based Qualcomm and is receiving educational support from the Scripps Whittier Diabetes Institute of San Diego.

The project will allow healthcare workers, known as promotores, to access patient-specific data, manage patient appointments and view training material in the field. Patients are able to view instructional videos and other educational material online, stay in touch with caregivers and receive mobile and email alerts about their own health.

"One of the greatest issues that these communities face is that--because of distance, public transportation challenges and lack of time--it is extremely difficult to visit doctors and nurses. With this project, patients are now connected to their healthcare providers, including promotoras, wirelessly via their mobile devices, which will enable them to obtain care they could not receive in the past and help them to live healthier lives," Marcela Merino, director general of Tijuana-based health organization Fronteras Unidas Pro Salud, says, according to Borderzine.

To learn more:
- check out this Borderzine story and bilingual Dulce Wireless Tijuana video