mHealth in an mWorld

How mobile technology is transforming health care

Examining factors driving the adoption of mHealth and opportunities it presents to lower costs and improve patient outcomes.

The smart phone has already become the keeper of an expanding array of health care apps that prod and poke the owner to become fitter, lose weight and be altogether healthier.  This trend, however, is just the beginning of a new mobile paradigm now emerging in health care.  Mobile technologies have become ubiquitous among health care consumers and professionals. Simultaneously, the healthcare industry is moving towards a delivery model that is patient-centered and value-based. A new report by the Deloitte Center for Health Solutions asserts that mobile technologies can facilitate the shift in the relationship between clinicians, payers, life sciences companies and patients that will be required to implement this new model.

Report highlights include:

  • The health care and life sciences sector is recognized as one of the top three fields (along with consumer products and the financial services industry) likely to experience new mobile business model growth in the next five years, according to the Deloitte Open Mobile Survey 2012.
  • After a slow start, the capabilities offered by mobile technologies are fast being appreciated by the health care industry with a raft of devices, sensors, apps and other programs being developed that target chronic conditions, telemedicine and remote monitoring, patient data capture, electronic records, e-prescribing and the parallel industries of fitness and wellness. 
  • mHealth holds promise for improvement along the value chain – maximizing professionals’ time and productivity, improving quality, increasing access and equity, stimulating greater consumer involvement, and potentially decreasing costs, or perhaps equally as importantly, getting better value for the money invested. 
  • The extent to which stakeholders create user confidence through adequate privacy and security protections will play a key role in accelerating or retarding the adoption of mHealth and the realization of benefits.
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