There was a time when it took days to get a doctor’s appointment – even for regular health check-ups. But these days, the waiting times are slowly disappearing as physical appointments are being replaced by virtual real-time video appointments.
What’s more, this ease of service story is not confined to the patient’s side alone – the doctors also have a similar positive take on mHealth.
The journey of healthcare from a straight-jacketed approach to a more digitized avatar has contributed to making healthcare available and affordable to all. While there are several benefits of mHealth app development, there are a few challenges as well.
The global mHealth market is predicted to reach $166 billion by 2028, registering an astonishing growth rate of CAGR 17% over the 2016 – 2028 periods. And this sector is expected to record the fastest CAGR surge from 2021 to 2028 due to the rising demand for mobile apps by both patients and doctors.
The rise in demand for mHealth applications can be attributed to increased mobile penetration, internet availability even in remote locations, and the need for access to healthcare facilities.
While mHealth app development company have gained traction in the healthcare industry, they are continuing to face challenges. In this article, let’s look at some of the features of mHealth apps and the challenges.
Features of mHealth Applications
The ease of fixing doctor’s appointments is one of the most basic functionalities required in a mHealth app. A decent mHeath app should make it easier for patients to book appointments and help doctors get a holistic view of their day’s appointments.
Healthcare tracking is another fundamental feature of a mHeath application. It allows patients and doctors to have a complete understanding of the patient’s health conditions. Healthcare app development companies should pay attention to enhancing tracking features in their application so that it becomes easier to monitor blood pressure, blood sugar level, blood oxygen levels, pulse rate, caloric intake, and more.
Scheduling and Notifications
mHealth App Development should also focus on helping patients and users schedule timing and receive notifications for medicine intake, water consumption, daily caloric intake, track sleep, and more.
This feature is mainly helpful for healthcare professionals and organizations to get real-time access to a patient’s healthcare records, medical history, diagnosis, lab reports, prescriptions, and treatment strategies.
Accessing Healthcare Facilities
This feature helps patients lookout for physicians and specialists near their location using the healthcare application’s built-in map. It is particularly useful during emergencies or when the patient is not in their primary area.
Real-time Video and Chat
When the need to stay indoors is imperative these days, real-time video and chat features have become a standard in healthcare software solutions. Remote assistance has ensured patients have access to healthcare facilities while still being indoors. Doctors can now provide consultation through video or chat, even to patients in remote locations.
Another feature that makes these healthcare app development companies stand out is the inclusion of payment gateways in their mHealth applications. Integration of wallets, net banking, debit/credit card payments gives patients an easier way of paying for doctor’s services. Moreover, they can also use this functionality to pay for insurance and for treatment. It also makes it easier for documentation and billing.
Review of Services
Sometimes it becomes difficult to select the right specialist when there are doctors practicing at every corner of the city. These apps incorporate reviews and ratings into their system to help patients choose the right doctor depending on their efficiency.
It is a no-brainer and a must-have in any mHealth app. Healthcare app development companies should pay special attention to having analytics in the mHealth app. The app should have a dedicated dashboard to help all stakeholders, including doctors, to have a place where they can track patient count, resources, finances, and other health-impacting concepts.
Digital transformation of healthcare is truly possible when apps can protect patient data in a secure system. Cloud integration goes a long way in helping safeguard information and assuages patient’s concerns regarding privacy.
Challenges of mHealth App Development
Regulations and Compliance
Regulatory compliance is one of the biggest challenges faced by those providing healthcare software solutions. Most major countries have their own set of rules and regulations that app developers should follow. For a start-up looking to launch a mHealth app, it’ll become highly challenging to adhere to all rules. Unless you can engage the services of a reputed app development company, it’ll be a hassle to put the apps in the market.
Data privacy is a huge concern for many users, and since mHealth apps gather personal medical data about patients, it is a rather genuine concern that app developers should consider. It is essential for healthcare software solutions providers to abide by the rules laid down by regulatory agencies for data privacy.
Complexity in Integration
Applications that integrate seamlessly with existing systems and are easy to use have much more chances of being adopted by users. Most mHealth apps prove to be difficult to integrate as they run on complex programs.
Applications should integrate well with the systems used by hospitals and doctors, ensure ease of use and not require overhauling of the entire system.
The true purpose of digital transformation of healthcare is when medical information is available to patients despite geographical restrictions. While the medical fraternity will have immense details, it is highly unlikely that ordinary patients will also possess the same knowledge.
The solution lies in increasing the medical literacy levels of patients by delivering crucial information in a simplified manner to patients and caregivers.
Security of Payment Information
mHealth apps should make it easier to disperse medical information to patients seamlessly and ensure swiffer billing and payment resolution. App development companies should have a system to ensure sensitive data is handled well and is resistant to security attacks.
The focus should be on developing apps that can bring affordable healthcare services to patients – regardless of their location – maintaining an iron grip on payment security and information safety. No doubt, there is a lot of hard work and challenges involved. Engage the services of app development companies and get the wheels in motion for a winning application. Digital transformation of healthcare is a powerful force that can solve some of the pressing issues of this sector.