mHealth or mobile health is rapidly turning into the new normal of the healthcare industry. Agile technological adoptions of mobile health have created a plethora of opportunities for remote caregiving and speedier service. A cheaper and faster diagnosis is the biggest advantage of mobile health, but there are several others. mHealth apps have significantly improved the quality and approach toward healthcare services. The market for mHealth apps is fast evolving with dynamic options for caregivers and patients’ convenience. Healthcare organizations should consider making mHealth apps their priority towards growth and a better bottom line.
Consider this. At least once or maybe more, you have used your phone for some health-related task. Whether it is to show your physician a picture related to a health concern or for a prescription, now, imagine if the entire process of a healthcare service could be executed with that kind of convenience. This is the crux of mobile healthcare. Make no mistake. Mobile healthcare is as convenient for the healthcare organization as it is for the patient. There is a wholesome sense of satisfaction. Almost 70% of Americans agree with this and use mobile health apps in one way or another.
Nonetheless, whether you are a caregiver or a patient, there is some amount of vagueness when it comes to mobile health apps. There is a wide variety of options out there, and it can be hard to decipher which mobile health technology is right for you. Here is our guide for everything you need to know about mHealth.
What is mHealth?
As you see it today, a mobile health app has gone through a significant amount of evolution. Healthcare mobile apps have gained significant momentum, over the years, in the healthcare sector. With the consistently increasing number of people using mobile devices, a mobile health app is nothing short of a necessity. Within the current pandemic, the benefits of virtual care have been realized like never before. Telehealth solutions and a remote health monitoring system have been promptly adopted by healthcare organizations to stay ahead of the curve. A mobile health app further poses a significant advantage toward disease management and preventive care. It requires a knowledgeable adaptation of the mobile health app for the physician and patient alike.
Mobile health apps, as a form of automated healthcare solutions, can now be used to record encrypted and sensitive patient data. With information stored through healthcare cloud computing, future reference to relevant patient data is now easily accessible through mHealth solutions. A larger patient population can be managed through virtual care options on mHealth solutions. This is a dominating factor behind the surge of mHealth technology.
To gain a better understanding of what is mHealth technology, we have to look at it as a part of integrated healthcare solutions. mHealth solutions are used by over 80% of healthcare agencies in some form or the other. Physicians stand in the majority to affirm their belief that a mobile medical application plays a significant part in improving patient health while reducing doctor visit requirements. Finally, a majority of healthcare organizations confirm that their data efficiency has increased with the adoption of a mobile medical application.
Uses of a mHealth system:
The mHealth app has multiple beneficiaries’ uses. Globally, the mHealth app industry has reached a market size of over $60 billion. The main reason behind this surge in mobile health services is the maximized use of mobile devices and speedy advances in agile technologies of mobile health applications. Healthcare mobile technology, as the name suggests, is the integration of healthcare into mobile devices. Listed below are some of the immediate uses of a healthcare mobile app.
Increased Connectivity: Traditionally, patient and doctor interaction was essentially limited to in-person doctor appointments. However, with a healthcare mobile app and efficient healthcare management, frequent interactions can be organized through a mHealth solution.
Chronic Disease Management: Unlike the days gone by, when patients were checked up at periodic intervals, mHealth technologies now allow consistent and regular monitoring of patients. Chronic diseases are vigilantly tracked virtually to ensure that any flags are promptly addressed through electronic data interchange.
Easy Accessibility: One of the biggest challenges of the healthcare industry has been mounting paperwork. With an efficient healthcare mobile app, this hurdle is eradicated. Medical data is accessible instantly and safely on the healthcare mobile app for timely action. They can even be synced with EHR systems for overall functionality.
Self-Monitoring of Health: When a healthcare mobile app is embedded with the right tools and technology, patients can take responsibility for monitoring their own health and reduce the pressure on the healthcare organization. Multiple features such as an oximeter, sugar testing, activity level measures, etc., can be utilized.
Appointment Scheduling: Instead of leaving this burden on the administrative staff of the healthcare organization, appointments can be scheduled directly by the patients on the healthcare mobile app. The process is seamlessly conducted through a series of automated steps.
Telehealth Consults: Unnecessary trips to the caregiver can be avoided through telemedicine options in healthcare mobile app development. This means that a patient can do a quick online consult for matters that may not require in-person visits. A patient engagement system can be established through mHealth services that allow the patient to connect with their caregiver for an audio/ text or video consult.
Medical Data Records: Healthcare organizations understand the burden of extracting medical information from patients. Likewise, patients have to constantly provide this medical data to multiple healthcare professionals. Healthcare mobile app development allows for shared health-related data to offer this information in an automated fashion to all relevant entities.
Appointment Reminders: Healthcare organizations should consider applying this feature during healthcare mobile app development as an important tool of mobile health services. This eliminates a major chunk of repetitive administrative work and decreases the possibility of no-shows. Simply put, the mHealth application will provide the patient with an automated reminder based on previous appointment scheduling data entered.
Medication Alerts: Frequently, patient health degeneration is a result of irregularity of medication. Remembering to take medication benefits not only the patient but also the healthcare organization in providing a better health experience to the patient. Through efficient mHealth app development, medication reminders can ensure that patients are reminded at the scheduled time to take their prescribed medication.
Benefits of mHealth Development:
With the adoption of mHealth and telemedicine, the advantages for caregivers, healthcare organizations, and patients are numerous. Below are some obvious benefits:
Reduced Cancellations: One of the foremost advantages of mHealth applications is the fact that the appointment alert feature enables patients to adhere to their visits, saving the healthcare organization from cancellations and maximum utility of caregiver hours.
Medication Regularity: This is another strength of the reminder feature in mHealth applications, wherein patients are consistently reminded to take their medication. This provides maximized health benefits to the patient and the utility of the healthcare organization.
Reduced Healthcare Expenses: Mobile health applications have proven to reduce a considerable amount of expense for the healthcare organization and patients. Timely medications, attention to health through wellness apps, etc., keeps the patient’s health in check and reduces re-visits. Healthcare organizations experience reduced costs of administrative paperwork and physical visits.
Reduced Administrative Burden: Paperwork, appointment follow-ups, patient data management, etc., are all tasks that require the healthcare organization to employ an extra pair of hands. All of these processes are undertaken through the smart technology of mobile health applications. This immediately benefits the healthcare organization through the automation of processes.
Medical Billing Simplified: Through the adoption of healthcare mobile services, several features of medical billing and patient data are automated. This reduces the scope of manual errors that cause denied or rejected claims. Faster reimbursements result in a better bottom line for the healthcare organization.
Caregiving efficiency: From medical informatics to practice management solutions, healthcare mobile development encourages efficient and timely service to patients. Healthcare mobile application allows the caregiver to be easily accessible and thereby enhances patient experience.
Optimized Medical Data: With the transition of medical mHealth data, the patient’s medical information is safely available on a secure platform for easy access and updating. mHealth security has significantly advanced in the current times, creating efficient opportunities for data analysis and medical billing.
Current Trends in Mobile Health Solutions:
Patient Wellness: A fast emerging trend in mobile health management is wellness apps that encourage users to maintain healthy lifestyles. Health dimensions of fitness, lifestyle, and nutrition are monitored through the mobile health system. With an increasing amount of patients adopting wellness options such as exercising, activity tracking, and nutrition monitoring, health goals are created and aspired toward. This form of mobile health app development is usually deployed in wearable devices. It allows users to store and use mobile health data for meaningful analysis.
Remote Health Monitoring: This form of mHealth and telehealth are used to manage chronic conditions, such as diabetes. Through agile technologies that ensure mobile health security, the mHealth system keeps track of blood glucose levels, pulse meters, oxygen levels, etc. The caregiver can monitor their patient’s health remotely, without the need for physical follow-ups. This form of e-health is also used to monitor blood pressure, heart rates, weight management, etc. Some forms of e-health apps also allow patients to answer relevant questions for doctor analysis and remote health management. Finally, recent eHealth apps also provide insights on health management.
Data Management eHealth Apps: Patient apps that allow users to store, update, and maintain their health data have emerged among the dominant eHealth solutions. This data can be shared with the caregivers via a secure platform through data security enablement on eHealth solutions. Images and data visualization technologies can be enabled through mHealth providers. In this manner, patients can store and view their medical information on demand, which includes lab results and prescriptions. Health accessibility is considerably enhanced through these mHealth tools.
Text and Video Communication: Fueled by the pandemic, patients have realized the convenience of virtual video consults and text messaging options that connect them to their caregivers. mHealth sensors further aid in the monitoring of vital signs that aid patients to take responsibility for their own health and schedule virtual appointments with the healthcare organizations accordingly. Along with the text and video communication feature, a mobile health monitoring system tracks the daily vitals or progress of the patient. With assured mobile health app security, there is a database of doctors to choose from.
As a healthcare organization, if you find yourself wondering about how to improve mHealth use in patients, there is already considerable progress in this domain. Over 65% of growth has been observed in the usage of mHealth apps over the past five years. The desire to take control of their own health is the dominating reason behind this growth. Now, with a raging pandemic across the world, doctors and healthcare organizations have also lapped up opportunities for virtual care.
As demand increases, mHealth apps are empowered to offer myriad services unlike ever before. Increasing security and regulation compliance have mitigated the risks and hesitancies involved in using these apps. To sum it up in a nutshell, healthcare organizations have to get on the mHealth trend to be able to stay ahead of the curve and address the contemporary demands of our age.