“Information about your health is a service” – Yes it is and UK’s Department of Health is now focusing on prescribing apps to patients, much as we prescribe medicines. This bridges the gap between patients and care providers; providing a social platform to engage patients in their own care. This not only provides health information to the patient, but provides a way to monitor compliance easily and objectively.
Would we have the free apps forever? How much would the app cost to me?
“Free Apps” – Quality data management and streamlined user experience comes at a cost. Although, there are free health management apps right now, could these sustain the masses in future? That remains to be seen.
Patient’s Perspective – National Health Services, UK reported more than 1 million downloads of their NHS Direct App. People are catching on to the idea, but the key question is, whether its their health or the technology? Are people just using apps to test “another” app or manage their health with a “portable” tool? Well, we believe it may be a little bit of both. It takes several shots to score a goal, so its probably a good idea that people are trying out options before they decide the best. Perhaps, this will drive the costs of integrated apps in future. So, a call to the healthcare app developers, just keep’m coming!
Physician’s Perspective – From a physician’s perspective, apps are not intended to replace clinical judgement. They rather “support” clinical judgement by providing time series of health events. Their biggest concern would be data mining; how to make sense of all the information?
App Developer’s Perspective – Well, this need for information should drive the next gen app development, as collecting the right information at source provides the most efficient strategy for data management. The frequency of information collection depends on acute Vs chronic disease state, preventative vs emergent state and severity state.