The UK’s University of Birmingham has entered a partnership with Dexter and Cegedim Health Data to conduct the RADIANT trial that focuses on gestational diabetes mellitus (GDM).

The trial will use a new approach that automates patient identification and recruitment for randomised clinical trials (RCTs) and also examines a specific intervention to boost testing for type 2 diabetes among women who are at risk of the ailment.

It has been financed by the National Institute for Health and Care Research (NIHR) Research for Patient Benefit programme.

University of Birmingham Epidemiology and Health Informatics lecturer Dr Francesca Crowe is leading the trial.

Under the new collaboration, RADIANT will employ Dexter’s new software platform to find women who can be enrolled for the trial from Cegedim Health Data’s real-world database, The Health Improvement Network.

Researchers at the University of Birmingham’s Institute for Applied Health Research have developed the platform.

Once Dexter’s software platform finds suitable women for the trial, Cegedim will use its own software to inspect eligibility, randomise women to the intervention or control group, as well as reminding the intervention group participants through a text message.

The message will feature a link to an animation created at the university that includes the goal of the test and its requirements, and encourages the participants to book a diabetes test with their GP.

GDM is annually diagnosed in more than 30,000 women in the UK and usually resolves after giving birth, with around 50% of women with a history of GDM developing type 2 diabetes.

Crowe said: “Standard randomised controlled trials (RCTs) rely on manual methods to identify and include patients, which makes the process time-consuming and costly.

Our aim in this trial is to validate that a data-driven approach offers better outcomes, as well as time and cost savings, and we will also find out whether the text message and animation are acceptable and good value for money.”