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The Buzz Surrounding Portable Care: mhealth

Mobile phones and devices might have been created to make and receive telephone calls, but technology has evolved at an exponentially rapid pace since. Now we’re at a point where video conferencing, interactive games, internet access, location trackers, apps and numerous other features and services, many not even fathomable a few years earlier, are in the palm of your hand.

 

One such development and an extremely significant one is mobile health (mhealth). This growing industry is changing the way doctors provide healthcare services, and how patients perceive and deal with medical decisions.

Mhealth tools such as mobile-based apps and devices which allow patients to monitor their heart rates, blood pressure rates and glucose rates, for example, and will help patients pay more attention towards managing their own health, will consequently decrease the number of trips they make to the doctor, and will cause the actual visits to be more effective.

Both doctors and patients will benefit from lower healthcare costs via such mobile apps and devices. As the focus for clinics, hospitals and the healthcare industry moves from the quantity of care to the quality of care, the payment benefits are also trending in that direction.

Moreover, the increasing collaboration between app developers and healthcare experts is resulting in the formation and improvement of such apps every day. Moreover, they are making apps for everything. For example, there’s an app which tells you how much you’ve saved since you gave up smoking, another which allows you to document weight loss through selfies (self photographs) and those which help identify potentially fatal symptoms so you can schedule doctor visits accordingly.  Physicians can also integrate the mhealth apps with their EHR Software.

However, the biggest hurdle to the process, isn’t the endorsement of such devices by doctors, but instead patients and their decision to adopt mhealth. If mhealth treatment plans are not followed, there will not only be health-based costs but huge financial ones too.

Mhealth has not been adopted by the masses yet, but at the current rate of progress in the industry, the day when every American has endorsed mhealth looks an actual and achievable possibility.