Mobile health is experiencing a paradigm shift as consumers require ease of accessibility and transparency in healthcare. However, there is still reluctance among users regarding privacy of data and information shared. Statistics suggest that global digital health market was valued at 80 billion U.S. dollars in 2015 and is expected to increase to over 200 billion U.S. dollars by 2020. The mobile health segment of the industry is expected to generate the second largest revenue share, reaching 46 billion U.S. dollars in 2020.

Following the advent of the internet revolution and subsequently mobile, the healthcare industry is seen to be quickly adopting mobile technology as a tool for connecting users with medical professionals. This has empowered patients to directly connect and engage with their physician, schedule medical appointments, receive diagnosis; besides sharing and storing information. Moreover, hospitals management software and mobile solutions that facilitate internal communication are in huge demand nowadays.

This graph illustrates the revenue that is projected to be generated from healthcare wearable device sales worldwide from 2015 to 2021. By 2019, this figure is expected to grow to around 4.4 billion U.S. dollars globally. Mobile application development for healthcare provide an innovative way of collecting health related information without the need of using conventional laptops or desktops. With smartphone or mobile devices such as an iPad or Android-based tablet, information can be exchanged, helping connect patient monitoring devices to practitioners.

There are several categories of healthcare apps:

Types of Healthcare Apps

  • Clinical or assistance in diagnosis
  • Symptom checkers
  • PHR access
  • Digital imaging (MRI/X-Raying viewing abilities)
  • Electronic chart review
  • Lab results review

Remote monitoring

  • LifeScan for patients with diabetes
  • Remote heart monitoring
  • ECG viewer
  • Oxygen level check

Reminders and alerts

  • Prescription management
  • Appointment reminders
  • Applications for references
  • E&M coding
  • Specialized medical reference material

Healthy living

  • Pregnancy and baby development
  • Healthy Diet & Diet assistance
  • Exercise and fitness

Productivity Apps

  • Remote dictation
  • Surgery Scheduling
  • Interoffice communication

Rise of Healthcare Mobile Apps

Amidst challenging regulatory environments, as well as new trends in consumerism, pharmaceutical companies need to engage with patients to show true value and increase in pricing if any. Companies are developing several innovative ways to engage with patients, including mobile apps and other services. These apps and services are being developed with a singular focus of improving engagement with consumers. Several consumers suffering from chronic health conditions are willing to share data with pharmaceuticals and drug companies in anticipation of high level of personalization.

Internet has transformed the way healthcare industry functions, as patients and healthcare providers are now more accessible to each other. Patients can now seek every information from hospital infrastructure to treatment options including medical experts, which earlier was a real challenge for the sector struggling with accessibility.

Also, web applications have helped simplify workflow and business processes of healthcare facilities, enhanced hospital management, improved internal staff communication as well as error-free digitally empowered diagnosis and treatment options.

Mobility unlike web solution brings in limitless opportunities for businesses willing to create an edge for themselves in the healthcare sector. However, this calls for adherence to certain characteristics that providers should always keep in mind.

Serve Diverse Audience: Healthcare is a sector with an enormous overlap of consumers across different levels – right from physicians, hospitals, individual healthcare providers to patients. The only way business providers can cater to the demands of the industry is by creating a broad spectrum of solution like mobile apps, mobile websites and messaging system as well.

Easy-to-use Interface: Healthcare sector is one of the most regulated industries with user experience being a prime factor. This makes it important to build an easy-to-use interface where simplicity in features is maintained so as to ensure that users are able to get where they want to go quickly and easily in just a few clicks.

Improved Usability: Integrate features that prove to be beneficial and keep patients engaged to when they are on the move. This can be something in the likes of GPS feature that will provide users the direction to the nearest or desired healthcare facility from the current location; or empower users to schedule appointments as well as change them as and when required.

Simplicity & Uniqueness: With millions of mobile application available at the app store, it is highly important to create intelligent solution that besides being simple, secure and scalable – is unique and user-friendly. Ensure that your app idea is validated by experts so that you do not spend your time and money unnecessarily in building a product that makes no ripples at the highly competitive and dynamic app market.

Advantages of Healthcare Mobile Apps

Improved Patient Safety: Healthcare mobile apps provide patients tools to manage overall health and wellbeing of patients. Apps can help remind users to take medications or set alert for the next follow-up visit. Mobile apps help patients overcoming traumatic health issues about the next steps when they arrive home. You could focus on the most urgent tasks and the app would take care of the rest. It is as if healthcare mobile apps are the key needed for a safe and healthy recovery.

Improved Patient Engagement: Whether it is lack of transparency, long wait time at the physician’s office or more, very often entire healthcare system can turn out to be a complex maze to the dismay of patients. Apps can play an instrumental role in eliminating

Improved Access to Care: With the new age digital connectivity, the requirement for patients and doctors to be in the same location is eliminated. Patients suffering from chronic diseases living in areas with limited access to doctors will be able to “visit” with primary care physicians or specialists located in the next major city. Increasingly, the patient will be in his or her home.

Emerging Trends in Healthcare App Development

While several other industries have embraced emerging technologies such as artificial intelligence, drones and augmented reality, healthcare is still lagging behind. Right from augmented reality and virtual reality, artificial intelligence, blockchain, drones, IoT to 3D printing, this year marks the arrival of these technologies, and we’re beginning to see their impacts on business models, operations, workforce needs and cybersecurity risks.

With the changes in healthcare industry and its paradigm shift towards mobile apps, it is important to partner with right mobile app development company. Check the portfolio of healthcare apps and technical expertise of app developers.

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written by for Apps section(s).