ToldBy Diabetes

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ToldBy Diabetes: User generated mobile support service for people in crisis.

Stockholm, SwedenSweden
Year Founded:
Organization type: 
for profit
Project Stage:
$100,000 - $250,000
Project Summary
Elevator Pitch

Concise Summary: Help us pitch this solution! Provide an explanation within 3-4 short sentences.

Innovative audio support service in a mobile platform by and for people diagnosed with diabetes. Delivering relevant peer and expert experience in all critical phases, whenever the need arises. Tackling lack of motivation and medication nonadherence.
Saving lives and cutting costs.

WHAT IF - Inspiration: Write one sentence that describes a way that your project dares to ask, "WHAT IF?"

What if I didn't have to fight both my lack of motivation and my disease, what if support and experience told by peers was always available, then maybe I'm not one of the five swedes dying from diabetes today..
About Project

Problem: What problem is this project trying to address?

At least 35 million people are living with Diabetes in Europe. In Sweden 5 die each day, and 4/5 have dangerous blood levels. Annual cost on society (SWE) roughly 1 bn €. The strange part is that this can be avoided just by following medication-, food- and exercise guidelines. But due to lack of motivation, the crisis reactions and nonadherence the problems are actually increasing. The group is not invited to be a part of the solution.

Solution: What is the proposed solution? Please be specific!

The maine cause to nonadherence in DT1/DT2 is psychological, caused initially by the crisis reaction. ToldBy Diabetes address that problem with a carefully developed audio based support service that the patients at any time can reach in their smartphone. The Service always delivers relevant support stories and experience told by peers. The platform allows the user to upload and share their own story and experience empowering oneself and giving support to others. The context, The Good Example, feeling of belonging and being listened to are crucial factors when reaching acceptance. ToldBy & The Diabetes Association help strengthening the community and their ability to help, empower and heal. The outcome is successful self-management.


Finalist Creative Business Cup Sweden. Finalist International Health Innovation Challange.
Impact: How does it Work

Example: Walk us through a specific example(s) of how this solution makes a difference; include its primary activities.

Meet Hanna 16! She's got everything going for her. Until suddenly, she gets a diabetes diagnosis. It all turned up side down. Life became a prison. No parties, no late nights, no snacks, no fun. Eventually she'll have to tell the class and her boyfriend. But for now she's locked in her room refusing her meds. One day a friend on facebook posts a link of a girl, Karen, telling her story on ToldBy Diabetes. Hanna Listens, suddenly she's no longer alone. What she feels, thousands, millions have felt before, there is great support and experience in all difficult times. Hanna still listens to Karen, but also others. And recently she shared her own story on ToldBy. Her boyfriend is really supportive and what felt as a prison isn't quite as bad.

Impact: What is the impact of the work to date? Also describe the projected future impact for the coming years.

The project will launch Q1 of 2016 with the first pilots ready in Q4 of 2016. Over the coming three years 2016-2018 we anticipate annually 1000-2000 active listeners between ages 13-35 and roughly 1500 parents to kids with diabetes. We anticipate 10.000-15.000 active and sporadic listeners during 2016-2018. Proof of concept: Although the method and the platform is untested in large scale, it is built on methods that are well proven, tested and implemented. Alcoholics anonymous focus on sharing stories, experience and support through peers and mentors. The DOC (Diabetes Online Community) is the worlds largest patient community. This proves that the group have a great need to reach and get in contact with peers. Radio La Colifata in Argentina. Mankind has always used verbal spreading of experience from peer to peer, we still do, every day. Why not stick to what works, just scalable?

Spread Strategies: Moving forward, what are the main strategies for scaling impact?

In 10 years we see the method being implemented in a variety of diagnosis and crisis. For example several different Adherence segments and alcoholism, various cancer diagnoses etc. Spreading the method to other languages also presents interesting prospect. To achieve this ToldBy will continue strategic partnerships with patient organisations, existing Apps and Pharma in the different markets. ToldBy welcomes independent adoptions of the method which can lead to greater awareness and interest on how mental health effects all health. There are room for several players with different niches.

Financial Sustainability Plan: What is this solution’s plan to ensure financial sustainability?

Short term (1-3 years) we are running on public funding. Gradually, after the costs for research and development are completed, ToldBy will be able to sell productions and subscription to our different support programs. Possible clients are Health Care providers, Patient Organisations, Pharmaceutical industry, individuals. ToldBy will within 5 y also be able to help other groups in crisis i.e. refugees, military personel, long-term sick leave etc

Marketplace: Who else is addressing the problem outlined here? How does the proposed project differ from these approaches?

The problem of nonadherence is tackled both broad and narrow. Doctors and pharmacies are trained how to meet, talk with and listen to patients. Medical industry and patient organisations develop information and education material. Other develop Apps for specific purposes. Or Alcoholics Anonymous that arrange physical group meetings. The practice of teaming up with patient organisations has played out great, so much it is now implemented in ToldBy's growth strategy. ToldBy is unique in bringing support from peers digitally therefor we can complement and collaborate with other players.

Founding Story

It all started back when I was Project Manager at Radio Totalnormal, a radio project by and for people with mental illness, says founder Martin Odh. When we started the project we already knew that there was an unmet need for people with mental illness to speak and share experience. What really surprised us was the feedback from listeners. "The show really helped me through my darkest hours. Now I would like to share my experience." That's when I realised the full potential of verbal experience sharing, explains Martin. We based the concept of Radio Totalnormal on Argentinian Radio project La Colifata from ASHOKA fellow Dr. Alfredo Olivera.


Martin Odh, Founder, Full-time. CEO and Project Manager. Has worked as director, radio producer, CEO. Camilla van der Meer Söderberg, co-founder, part-time. Producer and content manager. Has worked as radio director and producer, dramaturge in theatre and radio. Fredrik Suter UX Lead. freelance. Stina Söderberg, psychologist and author, with expertise in Diabetes care. Swedish Diabetes association with 25000 members.
CO-CREATION IDEA: Please offer a brief description of how you imagine a win-win partnership with Boehringer Ingelheim to better serve unmet needs in health. (Hint: Please mention the underlying business model envisioned that would make such a partnership sustainable.)

ToldBy offer a unique method and platform for tackling nonadherence. The target group is engaged as both users and contributors, by the 1000.
Together with Boehringer Ingelheim R&D we can research the effects on psychologically caused nonadherence. With BI’s insight we can identify new areas for mental treatment of nonadherence. BI’s can distribute ToldBy’s Service with their relevant products. As a QE-code on a medicine bottle or to the prescribing doctor. Outcome: BI’s products will be used throughout the prescription period – patients following their medication therapy will lead a healthier longer life – costs on society will decrease.

NEEDS: Based on you response above, please specify which of the following resources, operations or expertise by Boehringer Ingelheim you imagine leveraging to actualize the proposed co-creation opportunity. Please check all that apply. (Hint: while financing is often critical to scale, we are also interested in understanding what other assets or expertise could be leveraged).

Research and Development, Specific Disease Expertise, Relationships/New Contacts, Access to Capital.

EXPLANATION OF NEEDS: Please explain your choices in more detail.

Relationships/New contacts: When tackling an issue of great magnitude you need players on all sides working together. Industry, health care, patient/user.
Research and development: Getting more data and perspectives into the method will increase quality of the service. We can also with more research study the actual outcome of using the service.
Capital: Growth in new markets is a costly endeavour. With the right partner, more markets open up.
Expertise: Boeringer Ingelheim's track record of research driven problem solving in key areas ToldBy can learn and improve our offer to these groups.

OFFER: What are the main assets you may contribute in a co-creation partnership with Boehringer Ingelheim that would better serve unmet needs in health?

Deep understanding of an unmet need in a specific market/context, Access to and established trust with customers/beneficiaries, Insights into marketing.

FOCUS AREAS: Which of the following best describes the main focus of your project? (select all that apply)

Improving the affordability of healthcare (e.g., microinsurance, reducing the economic cost of care), Remote care solutions for health management, treatment, and diagnosis, Packaging of health products and services to address needs currently unmet.

Please share what your organisation and Boehringer Ingelheim will Co-Create together
Please specify what your Co-Creation will result in:

If you selected "other" above, please explain:
Please provide a 1-2 sentence summary of your Co-Creation idea
How does this project link to the core mission of your organisation?
Beyond social impact, how does this project link to Boehringer Ingelheim’s core business?
What are the specific inputs and actions that each side will contribute to this Co-Creation idea based on each of your unique competencies and experiences?
Please describe the potential revenue model for this Co-Creation idea.
What possible risks or challenges do you foresee?
Is there anything else you would like to share about your Co-Creation idea?
How much input do you hope to receive from Boehringer Ingelheim?

If you selected "other" above, please explain:
Besides Boehringer Ingelheim, what other types of partners might be valuable to carrying out your Co-Creation idea, and why?