What is mHealth?

mHealth

What is mHealth?

mHealth is otherwise known as mobile health. mHealth is the use of mobile phones and other communication devices like smart watches, Bluetooth and wifi devices for delivering, managing, diagnosing, reporting medical services and information from the remote place without visiting directly.

What is the history of mHealth technology?

The mobile health industry wouldn’t have been in existence without the invention of the first cellphone. In 1917 a Finnish inventor Eric Tigersted filed a patent for a “pocket-sized folding telephone with a very thin carbon microphone”. This is considered as the first step in mobile phone technology. In 1949, the mobile telephone service program began, certain technological barrier prevented this program from growing across the country. The development of advanced, compact & powerful smartphones in 21st century stimulated the creation of mobile health applications for consumers worldwide. Smartphones provide a number of advantages such as portability, internet connectivity & computing power to run complex applications. The advent of wearable technologies has also made a major impact in mobile health care field.

How does mHealth technology work?

mHealth technology provides an effective management of hospital information systems, medical records, electronic health records, information and communication systems. Certain clinical software applications help in diagnosing disease. It also provides access to informational resources such as textbooks, medical guidelines, and references.

What are the benefits of mHealth?

  • The mHealth helps the government to educate and create awareness about various health care services among the people.
  • It serves as a support for disease diagnosis and medical treatment.
  • It connects various health care service providers & consumers.
  • It helps to track details & spread awareness about any epidemic outbreak during emergency conditions
  • It provides remote date collection and remote monitoring of the patients who are residing in remote areas.
  • It plays an important role in chronic-disease management.

What are the areas that are covered by the health care apps?

The healthcare applications are available for…

  • Personal health record
  • Medication adherence
  • Smoking cessation
  • Emergency
  • Sleep
  • Chronic conditions
  • Mental health
  • Women’s health
  • Strength training
  • Stress & Relaxation
  • Diet management and others.

How does the mHealth revolutionize the health care world?

The mHealth technology improves the quality of health care. This technology helps the patient to reduce health care cost by reducing their visit to doctors. This technology plays an important role in changing the way of communication between the patients and physicians. They also pave a new pathway for the real-time management of the patient with chronic health conditions.

What are benefits of mHealth technology?

The mHealth technology provides easy access to clinical information for the Doctors/medical practitioners. The mHealth technology assists the physicians in their important tasks such as health record management, communication, and consultation with patients and in making clinical decisions.

Why do patients use mHealth technology?

The mHealth apps & devices help the patients to track their own health data.

  • The mobile enabled patient portals provides the patient’s access to their clinical records.
  • The mHealth also serves as a means for the patient to communicate with the healthcare providers.
  • The mHealth plays an important role in chronic disease management as it offers real-time monitoring of the patients.
  • The mHealth technology is effective in providing constant monitoring of patients with chronic conditions. Adherence to chronic disease management helps to improve the health condition of the patients in a cost effective manner. For example, (Measure up/pressure down device helps to detect hypertension. A smartphone connected blood pressure device is used by the patient for recording and storing the BP (blood pressure) reading on their smart device. Automatically this reading is sent to the patient’s medical team for review).
  • The mHealth provides routine information of patient’s health thereby providing early detection of various diseases.

What are the Advancement in mHealth technology?

mHealth technology has been developed to provide

  • Support for chronic disease management (diabetes, asthma, and cancer)
  • Emergency response system
  • Home based remote monitoring of the patient
  • Diagnostic & decision support for remote clinicians
  • Patient safety systems
  • Pharmaceutical supply chain integrity.

What are the barriers for mHealth technology?

Although mHealth promises hospitals and providers lots of benefits, there are certain barriers in implementing the technology. The reports suggest that the telehealth services and policies are different in each state. The other major barrier is the lack of data security and quality standards.

What are the challenges to be faced by the mhealth providers?

Despite increasing demand for mHealth technology there are certain challenges that arise

  • Providing the security for the data is of obvious concern for health care industry. Hence definite rules and policies have to be framed.
  • Consumers demand to change rapidly hence it is critical to stay current and refresh apps often.
  • Health care organization need to ensure that the mobile apps and technologies are integrated with existing health IT systems and standard. Hence the technologies and mobile apps have to be properly tested and quality standards should be maintained.

What are the future developments in mHealth technology?

It is estimated that the worldwide market for mobile health technology will reach $11.8 billion when compared to $1.2 billion in 2011. A recent survey found that 62% of physicians are new using tablets for patients care with 71% of nurses using smartphones at work and 59% of patients prefer mHealth services. There are 400 medical apps now available for smartphones. In future, patients will measure their vitals and send to the clinic via smartphones through a secure mobile app.

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