During the last two decades type 2 diabetes has become one of the most common diseases in Finland. Previously it has been classified as a chronic disease, meaning it can not be cured.
The underlying factor is insulin resistance, which means that the body does not react normally to the insulin hormone. Furthermore this causes the blood glucose levels to increase.
Typically type 2 diabetes is kept in control by taking medicine that lowers the blood sugar. However, recent research indicates that the body’s ability to react properly to insulin can be recovered even after a long period of sickness.
Interview of Maiju and Tuomas Javanainen, Founders of Vaste
Maiju and Tuomas Javanainen are the Founders of Vaste Ltd. They both have a University background. Maiju’s discipline is pharmacy and Tuomas is doing research in biochemistry. The Vaste model is based on the research done by Tuomas.
– We both have our hands on clay, meaning we are daily in contact with our clients. Maiju also takes care of the medical safety of the clients, ensuring that the change in habits takes place in a safely manner, Tuomas tells.
Vaste is specialised in curing type 2 diabetes and metabolic syndromes.
– We prepare a personal plan for each and every client. The plan is based on blood tests done prior to the start. Based on these tests we evaluate the initial state of the client. Naturally, we take into account possible other diseases as well as their personal life situation.
– Our goal is remission, meaning recovering the insulin sensitivity of the client. This means that the client gets rid of the insulin medication, which can be seen from the HbA1c-levels.
Founders Maiju and Tuomas Javanainen, Vaste Ltd. Photo, Juha Rimpeläinen.
Currently clients are paying for the service by themselves.
– Our goal is that our model would be recognised and considered as a basic method in national healthcare, producing cost savings in public healthcare and at the same time improving the everyday life of diabetes patients, Tuomas underlines.
Costs beared by the society
The costs of diabetes for the society have been steadily increasing. In year 2011 alone, diabetes stood for nine percent of the total healthcare costs. The average cost of diabetes is 5700€ per client per year, when we take into account other diseases connected to diabetes.
Research group lead by Professor Janne Martikainen (University of eastern Finland) published a report of possible cost savings that can be achieved by preventive actions in type 2 diabetes. In Finland alone, some 700 000 persons from age groups 40-80 years belong to the risk group of type 2 diabetes. The expected total lifetime costs for the society are almost nine billion euros. By doing lifestyle interventions, we could save between one and two billion euros (to give perspective to these figures, the population of Finland is just 5.5 million people).
What makes the service of Vaste so special?
– We are the only player in the market that offers this intensive and continuous follow-up connected to remote guidance. We are in touch with the client from five to six times per day. We are daily following certain biomarkers. Once per week also weight and waist circumference are recorded. Measurements are done by the client and reported through the Coach4Pro App to the instructor, Maiju explains.
– Clients can contact the instructor whenever they wish. As we have all the data and messages stored, the follow-up is easy. Fine-tuning of the program, support and intervention whenever needed is based on the continuous cumulative data. Interaction is of essence in this kind of service.
Vaste has a very high customer satisfaction.
– 94% of our clients would recommend the Vaste program for persons having metabolic diseases. On top of this, change in habits is sustainable, 88% of our clients continues to follow the habits learned during the intensive program after it has finished. Also the quality of life increases, wellbeing in the daily life is something our clients appreciate, Tuomas summarises.
The Coach4Pro platform
– The most important feature of the platform is its closed system and thus its data security. Secondly, we have access to history data, which enables us to analyse and develop our service.
– Also the built-in messaging system is great and the easiness of interaction and feedback giving has been made easy, Tuomas states.
– Our existence is based on our vision to help as many clients as possible to recover from type 2 diabetes and prevent the disease in advance. We have an obligation to tell that type 2 diabetes is not a chronic disease, but one can recover from it. We also want to promote the change in cure practices of metabolic diseases, Maiju says and continues,
– Our service is based on the effectiveness of our program. If a client has e.g. type 2 diabetes and joins and follows our program but does not recover, we refund the paid money.