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A Physician's Perspective: Meaningful Use of Health Technology

Dec 8 2010   11:51AM GMT

The growth in mHealth in 2011

Posted by: DrJosephKim
mhealth, mobile health

There’s no doubt that we’ll see growth in the mHealth market next year. In fact, the definition of mobile health continues to evolve as slate tablets like the Apple iPad and Samsung Galaxy Tab are entering the marketplace and blurring the lines that separate smartphones and computers. As smartphones become more affordable, we’ll probably also see fewer people using simple cell phones (or feature phones) and more patients and health care professionals will be using smartphones. The expanding smartphone market will certainly allow patients and health care providers to communicate more efficiently and exchange text, photos, and even videos on their mobile devices.

So what are the major growth opportunities in mHealth? Let’s take a look at a few examples:

We’ll continue to see growth around medication adherence. Patients will be leveraging reminder systems that combine encrypted SMS (texting) and other modes of communication to help them remember to adhere to their therapies.

We’ll see growth around mobile telemedicine. Patients are already exchanging emails and video clips with their physicians, but we’ll see more of this happening in real-time. Plus, we’ll see clinicians who are on the field (such as emergency workers) using their mobile devices to communicate with physicians back in the hospital. The telemedicine industry will experience significant shifts as mobile devices play a larger role.

We’ll see a wealth of new health and medical apps for smartphones. These apps are gaining tremendous popularity and we’ll continue to see more sophisticated apps in 2011.

It’s truly exciting to see how mHealth is evolving in the world of health care. Soon, the government will be providing financial incentives to doctors who demonstrate the “meaningful use” of mHealth.

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