Mobile Healthcare App Development - Future of Healthcare
The number of health apps for iOS and Android has more than doubled in the last years. And this is just a starter! Services helping people cope with various health problems anytime and anywhere have been becoming more and more popular from day to day. And if you want to find a way to earn using mobile technology, then healthcare app development is definitely what you need.
Though, you should keep in mind that entering the medical mobile app market is a tricky business which requires a special approach. Not sure where to start? Then our article will be useful to you.
We're going to tell you about mobile and technology trends in the healthcare industry, describe features of medical reference applications and explain what successful healthcare app development means. Don't hesitate to read!
What is the healthcare software industry?
They may ask: why is the healthcare industry growing? The reason is the emergence of new diagnostic and treatment options provided by innovative technologies including those related to medical mobile app development.
Undoubtedly, new technology in the healthcare industry make it possible to achieve the best results, and this is what determines success, right?
But what is the healthcare industry in conjunction with the mobile market? Let’s figure the issue out!
What is mHealth?
mHealth is a term denoting the use of mobile devices and wireless technologies in order to ensure a healthy lifestyle, including serious medical care. The most familiar to many examples of mHealth technologies are different types of healthcare apps aimed to help control a person’s physical condition.
The mobile healthcare market can be divided into 2 main areas:
Fit. These are mHealth apps focused on fitness and healthy lifestyle.
Med. In this case, it's not enough to download the application and get the appropriate gadget (say, a fitness bracelet). It's often required to cooperate with the clinic, doctor, diagnostic center (and so on), able to provide the user with proper feedback.
Facts about healthcare apps
According to the Research2guidance Project…
more than 95,000 medical apps for doctors and patients are listed in AppStore catalogs;
almost 45% of mHealth apps are using paid business models (more about business models for healthcare apps read here);
15% are aimed at healthcare experts (CME, PRM, healthcare mgt);
the most popular mobile health apps generate about 5 million free and 300,000 paid downloads around the world per day.
Interested? Let's go into the question…
Background of the mobile healthcare industry development
J'son & Partners Consulting analysts have identified 5 major factors contributing to the growth of mobile health app services:
Active distribution of mobile devices. The number of mobile subscribers has already exceeded 7 billion.
The aging population. According to UN forecasts, by 2050, 22% of the world's population will have been retired. Older people are more likely to suffer from chronic diseases and more in need of medical care.
The population living in the countryside. Villagers often don’t have access to qualified medical assistance and won’t mind getting remote treatment, and therefore patient health tracking apps are their primary choice.
Health systems are becoming more expensive. Growth in the number of people on the planet enlarges medical expenses. The cost of healthcare in the United States will increase from $ 3 trillion in 2014 to $ 5 trillion in 2022.
Medical staff deficiency. It is expected that by 2020 the US will have missed 1 million nurses. And again, mHealth apps are a great solution to the problem.
Types of healthcare apps
In the USA, the mobile healthcare industry has become one of the leading. On the market, there are various developments of the sort: from the simplest ones, say, doctor appointment booking apps, to the high-tech medical software (computer vision, machine learning, neural networks).
Conditional mobile health applications categorization:
Collection and preservation of various medical user metrics (pulse, arterial and intracranial tension, heart function, sleep, etc);
Fitness apps (exercise complexes, control of performance);
Mobile apps for a healthy lifestyle (diet, tips, etc.);
Control of drug taking and treatment;
Healthcare apps aimed at people suffering from a particular disease;
Apps to interact with a medical center or clinic.
Of course, features of medical reference applications depend on the initial requirements. Let's consider the issue in more detail!
Initial requirements and healthcare app features
Now we'll give a few specific examples, with the description of healthcare app features.
Medical center or clinic
Your clients are people who need a doctor's consultation and qualified treatment. It is important to convey these values while developing healthcare apps.
Features of doctor appointment booking applications must include:
convenient record to the right doctor;
preservation of doctor's instructions and orders;
preservation of clinical record and test results;
the possibility of obtaining data (test results, etc) via the Internet;
ideally, a convenient interaction with the attending doctor and the administration via a mobile device.
Different types of tests are an intermediate stage of any treatment. It's the results that are important here, so it's worth focusing on them. Users of such mobile healthcare apps need the following functionality:
basic rules of the process of taking tests (such as, what you should know when going to have a blood test);
record to get in without queue;
receiving and saving results;
convenient use of the results (send to the doctor, print);
a convenient view of the results change (say, a graph).
Drug stores and pharmaceutics
Your clients are people with real problems which require urgent solutions. Often, customers come to a drug store without visiting a doctor, and not knowing exactly what medicine they should buy. How can you make customers choose you? One of the possible ways is the healthcare app development!
The psychology of the modern consumer has changed. Today, he wants to be informed in advance which purchase would be the most effective in his case. And, of course, he is trying to find the information he needs using the Internet. Therefore, your branded mHealth app might come in handy.
You have to provide the following functionality:
a reliable source of data on medicines (reference book);
information about the availability of drugs in the store;
getting an order in the store;
Control of health of relatives
Here we’re talking about patient health tracking apps helping relatives get up-to-date information on the condition of a loved one being in the hospital. Experienced healthcare app developers are able to create a service performing this very task. Surely, the patient's relatives’ll be immensely grateful to have the possibility to always keep abreast.
P.S. If the clinic uses the patient history management software, some data may be automatically transferred to the user's personal cabinet.
Help in overcoming a particular disease
A person confronted with an illness gets into a new world, and not a good one. Yesterday he was healthy and led a steady life, and today he must take medicine and get used to visiting a doctor on a regular basis. Mobile health applications can be very helpful in this situation.
There are medical centers and clinics specializing in specific diseases: heart disease, oncology, gynecology, dentistry, urology, and others. You may think over special healthcare app features fitting each category and then discuss your requirements with hired app developers.
Mobile apps for a healthy lifestyle
If you’re not the owner of a medical clinic, pharmacy or other similar institution, you can still make money on mobile health app services. You just need to focus not on the treatment of specific diseases, but on help in leading a healthy life.
Such an application may include the following features:
Diaries of well-being;
Different programs (fitness exercises, calorie counting, diet control, etc.). The set of these programs depends on the type of a mobile health app. The most actual are the following ones:
Tools and instruments
It seems we’ve discussed mHealth app development in great detail. Now let's try to dip into the future to see what awaits us for that matter in a few years.
Latest trends in the healthcare industry
According to the American experts' estimates (Trends in Biotechnology, 2016), the market size of the mobile technology and new medical mobile applications (including aimed at diagnostics) will have reached $ 27.6 billion by 2018. Of course, "mobile medicine" won’t be the same all the time, it’s been evolving and changing from year to year. It's difficult to predict every piece of healthcare industry news but some of the trends can be identified.
Healthcare industry trends include…
So what does the future of mobile health apps promise us?
#1. Fitness-oriented apps are the most
Today, Fitness and Weight loss applications are the most popular ones. However, the conducted survey helped to find out that their business potential would be gradually declining over time. But don’t get upset! It doesn’t mean you can’t earn on them. You just need to be pretty smart about it when ordering mobile healthcare app development.
#2. The increasing need for special medical apps for doctors
On the other hand, in the coming years, we should expect a growing demand for mHealth apps focused on remote monitoring, consultation, and tracking the patient's status. Moreover, the next generation of devices will be able to track more indicators and maintain constant feedback from users.
By the way, the popularity of mobile devices in healthcare has already been growing, and there a few wonderful examples. In Sweden, Soarian Clinicals has already been successfully operating, allowing remote reading of stimulants of patients' hearts. There is also the Leaf Patient Monitor System - a wearable sensor which helps you remotely monitor the position and movement of patients who are prone to the formation of pressure sores. And this is just the beginning!
#3. Healthcare cost problem matters
Healthcare expenses should also be considered. All kinds of medical scheduling software able to reduce these expenses will be a success too because thanks to them patients can cut back expels. This category includes telemedicine applications and services that help peoples with chronic diseases to monitor their condition in a simpler and cheaper way.
And note, according to the BBC Research, by 2019 the global telemedicine market will have reached almost $ 44 billion, showing an average annual growth of 17.7%.
We've figured out the latest healthcare industry trends and news, but another question remains: how to recoup the cost of mobile app development for healthcare? in fact, there is no problem at all! Properly built custom mobile apps for patients and doctors are able to start earning you money right away.
Don’t believe? Take a look at the statistics.
The opinion of experts about the future of mobile health apps is divergent. Bob Rogers, the director of Big Data Solution Center, Intel, believes that technologies of the Internet of things will significantly improve the timeliness of rendering of medical services: patients’ll be able to get medical help when and where they need it, and doctors’ll access complete information about each patient.
Rob Havasy, the director and vice president of the medical alliance named Personally Connected, disagrees with him. He worries that devices might be used improperly, with ill purposes in mind, and he insists on the importance of personal data security of patients.
It remains to be seen who is right. One thing is clear: progress cannot be stopped, and it's in your interests to make a profit on it, namely - to order development of a healthcare mobile application!
So, we can draw conclusions: the earlier you join the mobile healthcare market, the better! In the future, it’ll be more difficult to prove oneself among a huge number of competitors creating apps for healthcare providers. We recommend that you order mobile health app development right now. Don’t delay!
If you have doubts which IT company to choose as healthcare app developers we’re happy to help you. Our experts are highly skilled and hard at work. We have solid experience, know everything about mobile application development, and are quite ready to take up all mobile healthcare industry challenges.
Contact us right now!