Health Apps: How Mobile Apps Are
Improving Our Lives & Well Being
By Varsha Solanki
People have become increasingly health-conscious. Whether it is the number of steps or heartbeats per minute, nowadays people keep track of everything. They obviously don’t do it manually. Mobile health apps take care of it.
These apps are everywhere, on smartphones, tablets, smart wearables - smartwatches, fitness bands, even attached to clothes.
There are also other aspects of health that these mobile apps can help with. Meditation apps, fitness workout apps, diet apps to name a few are also much in demand.
Another sector of health apps are apps for medical professionals. These apps make it easy to consult patients and also keep an eye on the symptoms.
Let’s dig a little deeper into these apps...
The rise of mobile healthcare apps
Most people hate going to the hospital. They either hate standing in long queues or don't like the sight of the gloomy waiting rooms. Such mobile apps are a great alternative to going to the hospital in many cases if not all.
Observing the extent of the utility of such health apps, health and fitness apps have now become a rage among millennials. In fact, the trend has been there since 2010.
There were over 3.7 billion downloads of mHealth apps in 2017. The market size of these mobile Healthcare apps is expected to grow approximately 20-40%.
Healthcare apps can be classified into 3 categories:
- Telemedicine apps: These apps include on-demand doctor apps that let the patients have a virtual consultation with their doctors. The telemedicine market value was over the US $18 million in 2015 and is expected to grow to about US $40 million by the year 2021.
- Health and wellness apps: These are the apps that help the users to keep track of their health every day. These are sleep trackers, nutrition tracking, stress-management apps, and meditation apps. These apps give users control over their health.
- Health management apps: These apps are for the patients to help them keep track of their symptoms and disease. They have the power to manage their health. The medical professionals can remotely keep track of the patient's condition and prescribe treatment if necessary.
Let us now see how these apps are making a difference in the lives of patients, caretakers and medical professionals...
A Reduction in Healthcare Costs
Money is one of the important concerns in the medical field. Patients have been suffering not only due to health issues but also because of the high cost of medical bills.
The cost of surgeries might not be decreased due to mobile apps but there are various other small expenses that are greatly affected and reduced with the help of these apps. For example, it can be time and money consuming to go see a doctor. The expense diminishes when the patient can consult the doctor sitting in their home.
Health management apps combine remote monitoring tools and smartphones providing constant updates on the health status of the patients to the care providers. This helps to co-manage the symptoms. The patients do not need to go see a doctor every now and then. Doctor visits are limited to only when it is actually needed.
Moreover, patients can also choose the hospital according to their budget.
Ease of Data Collection for Health Care Providers
There used to be cases where patients’ lives were endangered due to errors in a diagnostic method. Such possibilities are now negligible due to healthcare apps. The doctors now receive accurate reports of the patient’s health condition.
The medical staff can also keep patients’ records in a precise manner and without many chances of any errors occurring. Storing patients’ information has also become easier and they can retrieve this information any time they need it.
Apps are the best way to access patient information like vitals, medical history, prescriptions, lab results even at a remote location.
Increasing Convenience for Patients
Patients do not need to stand in a queue to pay the bill. The latest apps have secure payment gateways integrated into them. These allow the users to pay the amount securely and quickly without any hassle.
Apart from pay-per-visit plans, there are also subscription plans provided by many telemedicine apps for patients suffering from chronic diseases.
Waiting rooms are empty as patients have access to doctors anytime and anywhere.
Mobile healthcare in the future
It would not be wrong to say that the future of healthcare is mobile. Technologies are advancing at a great speed. Medical students are getting trained by specialists who are giving a lecture in another corner of the world.
Days are not far when doctors will perform surgery in one place and this will be shown to students, not only in real-time but also it will like they are present there. This will happen with the help of Virtual Reality and augmented reality.
Mobile healthcare has traversed a lot, but a lot is yet to be traversed.
Health apps have led to a convenient lifestyle for patients as well as doctors. The patient just needs to log into the app right from their phone and they can avail of diagnosis, treatment plan, prescriptions and get the drugs delivered to their homes – all without leaving the comfort of their own home.
Simply said, the same way we consume food by getting it delivered at home or transport by booking a cab via an app, now, we expect to pick up our smartphones and connect with a doctor.
Varsha Solanki is a Digital Marketing Strategist at Space-O Technologies, a mobile app development company. She has 3 years of experience in the Information Technology industry. She spends her time reading about new trends in Digital Marketing and the latest technologies.
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