When Greg Badros’s son was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes, his family quickly embraced diabetes technology, including a CGM and mobile apps. But what they found is that they didn’t have a good way of tracking multiple diabetes devices’ data with multiple caregivers. Luckily for other parents and loved ones of people with diabetes, Greg knew how to design software to help fill this much-needed gap. So, he developed Gluroo, a mobile app to help you log and track all things related to diabetes that affect families.
There are some devices or requirements needed to use GluRoo, but there is no cost to download the app. The two basic needs are internet access either via WiFi or a data plan, and a smart phone or tablet device. The app is available for free in the Apple App store and on the Google Play store, so it works on both Apple and Android devices.
With Gluroo, you form a GluCrew, the set of people helping the person with diabetes manage their chronic condition. It’s simple to invite additional members to the GluCrew through an email invite or use of a QR code.
Streamlining Diabetes Data
One of the biggest challenges Greg and his family encountered was a user friendly app in order to access all their son’s diabetes data in one place. They had used things like Nightscout in the past and wanted to make sure that what they created would work with multiple types of diabetes tools, including open-source software.
They also wanted to be able to record new supplies easily and quickly, like a new sensor and infusion set or pump site changes. Anyone in the GluCrew can just use their phone’s camera and point it at the packaging of the CGM or the pump to scan the QR code and the new item is logged automatically, including the device code and lot number. Gluroo automates as much as possible. For example, when a sensor fails, it links you to a form that is auto filled to request a new replacement sensor.
Smart Alerts, Information at your Fingertips, and Fast logging
The alerts that Gluroo has are very helpful and are “smarter” than the manufacturer-supplied alerts. For example, the app will always notify the person with diabetes first, and then escalates to the appropriate next member of the GluCrew. For example, while your child is at school, it could alert the school nurse after the child versus the parents next. Schedules can be set so school nurses only get alerts during their working hours and don’t have to remember to disable and re-enable alerts every day.
Gluroo also knows when an alert is addressed and then stops the alerts on everyone’s phones: no more having all the Dexcom followers separately quiet an alarm!
Gluroo’s top of the screen is reserved for highly relevant live updates of what’s going on with the person with diabetes’ CGM and, optionally, pump. The CGM value is there along with pump data such as insulin on board, food on board, the current activity mode or profile, and more.
The rest of the Gluroo display can show charts, details about devices, historical statistics including estimated A1C (or “GMI”), and settings, but much of the display is for the Gluroo Event Log where you see all the meaningful actions in chronological order. It’s in this “GEL” where the GluCrew members can also message each other to coordinate care.
Gluroo uses Natural Language Processing, or NLP, to understand what’s being messaged so sending the message “Eating 45g pizza” is understood as a carb announcement of 45g and the food on board is updated accordingly. There’s also a simple way to tap a couple of times to select what to log from an easy-to-use menu.
Safety as a Priority
Due to the risk of severe hypoglycemia (low blood sugar) for a person with diabetes, Gluroo has an added optional safeguard for severe lows. If someone does not acknowledge the low alert after a set time frame, the app can also issue an automated call to help wake up the person.
If you’re used to being frustrated by Dexcom Follow outages, Gluroo has solved that, too, with its own redundant system for remotely tracking CGM values from the person with diabetes. Follow can be down, but all the devices of people in the GluCrew will still see live updates of the CGM values.
CGM and Pump Integration
- Dexcom G6, G7 and Libre are supported.
- Omnipod OP5 and Dash are supported.
- DIY Loop is supported, as is the entire Nightscout ecosystem of open-source tools around Nightscout.
- Tandem and Medtronic are not well supported at this time.
Many people with Omnipod DASH are very happy using Gluroo while waiting for the app from Insulet to be fully developed and available. You can also put in manual BG data or stream data from other services such as Glooko to get the data into Gluroo. Any tool that writes into or reads from Nightscout can also work with Gluroo.
Some CGM’s allow you to have a few followers that can see glucose data in real time. This allows the follower to receive alerts when glucose levels are low or high, are dropping or falling quickly, or the CGM has lost signal. Unfortunately, there are only a few followers allowed per CGM device. So, if you have multiple parents, grandparents, school nurses, and other caregivers such as babysitters or nannies, you will run out of follower spots quickly. Gluroo allows plenty of followers, and ensures they’re always connected with real-time chat where every message has the context of the PWD’s blood sugar number.
Quality Improvement and Customer Service
Because Gluroo is mission-driven company run by a dad with a son with T1D, the customer service is impeccable. If there are questions, you can reach out to Gluroo and get one of a handful of staff to help address your concerns. They are also able to quickly fix any issues with the app or software.
More to Come
The goal for Gluroo is to help make peoples’ lives easier when it comes to managing diabetes. There’s more coming soon including integration with Apple Health with Apple Watch and Google Fit with Android WearOS watches. Stay tuned to find out what’s next!
Written and clinically reviewed by Marissa Town, RN, BSN, CDCES