mHealth could save 99 billion EUR in healthcare costs in the European Union (EU) and add 93 billion EUR to the EU GDP in 2017 if its adoption is encouraged. EU healthcare systems face significant challenges that are creating concerns about the sustainability of healthcare delivery. The combination of increased prevalence of chronic disease and an ageing population that continues to grow is exacerbating the burden on healthcare delivery and costs across multiple EU member states.
I have at least 11 apps to monitor my health, but I have to log into each of them. They are all little pieces and features that used to be in a PHR. I would like to not have separate apps. I would like someone who I trust to own all of my data and visualize and normalize it and organize it in a way that makes sense. That’s where we’re headed. We’re not there yet, but that’s where we’re headed.
What I call PHRs 2.0 is now you have a social networking element. At the very end of Google Health we were headed to social networking and device connectivity. We just needed more roadway.
Now, you won’t just have a report. Some of the newer PHRs are getting business if they have amazing (user interfaces) — if they’re beautiful, if they have companion user apps, and they’re social. They don’t just say we want to structure your data; now we want to connect you with other people who have your same illness, if you’re comfortable with that.
Health care providers should be making use of new mobile technologies that can facilitate higher quality of care in every patient interaction. A look at what's available now.
A doctor's time is increasingly scarce and expensive. The only scalable, near-term solution is to enable physicians to be more efficient and manage more patients, while empowering them to improve the quality of care they can provide.
What if doctors used powerful mobile applications to remotely track their patients' treatment compliance and progress? What if they could provide patients with remote access to their expertise, or to other medical knowledge they trust? What if they kept in- person office visits to the time they're really required for longer, in-depth consultations?
There are already some incredible startups developing mobile products that facilitate more efficient (and more economical) delivery of care. While these products, some of which are still in the early stages of development, won't replace or automate a doctor's job, they are great precursors for fostering a more transparent doctor-patient relationship.
For example, through patient monitoring and self-tracking, smartphones may help doctors catch early signs of disease. Ginger.io has developed a mobile platform that collects active data (patient-reported) and passive data (who you interact with through your phone and how far you travel during the day), right from a smartphone. This data is available via a web dashboard to authorized doctors and other health care providers who can use it to efficiently manage hundreds of patients. By tracking personal behavioral data, doctors can better understand the health of their patients, provide improved diagnoses and care recommendations, and be alerted quickly to signs of pending health issues.
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