According to the Pew Research Center, 52 percent of smartphone users gather health-related information using their phones. With advancements in health wearables and telemedicine, the mobile health revolution is in full force. From the way patients can now make appointments online to the methods in which doctors and health professionals provide care, the landscape is making a switch to mobile. Below are some of the top advances in mobile health technologies and what they mean for the future.
Telemedicine is most commonly used to provide health care from a different location using a variety of platforms including smartphones, email and video chat. Over the past several years, telemedicine has been implemented in hospitals, physician’s offices and even in a patient’s home or work, and includes everything from video-conferencing a patient to monitoring a patient’s vital signs from a remote location. As research in this field grows, the feasibility of remote surgery grows alongside it with a goal one day achieve telesurgery, where a surgeon can perform a robotic surgery from thousands of miles away.
Wearable health devices are rapidly growing in the medical industry. People are now adding wearable health technology into their day-to-day routines, allowing them to monitor anything from their heart rate to their quality of sleep at night. Doctors are also able to monitor a patient’s health in real time, which allows the doctor to provide a more individualized care plan. For example, knowing a patient’s activity level and heart rate will help doctors monitor patients who have congestive heart issues, and help prevent or anticipate any complications.
Wearable companies are even partnering with fashion brands like Tory Burch and Fossil to promote the use of wearable devices as trendy, everyday wear. The future of wearables is promising, and these wearables are likely to be able to collect even more biometric data in the upcoming years.
Mobile Health Apps
There are thousands of health apps available in Google Play and iTunes stores and popular apps like Fitbit and Pacer allow a person to monitor the amount of physical activity they do from day-to-day. There are also apps that monitor anything from sleep cycles to diet plans, and can make recommendations for living a healthier lifestyle based on activity levels.
According to Research 2 Guidance, the market for mobile health will reach $26 billion by 2017. As an institute that utilizes up-and-coming technology to push the medical industry forward daily, we love being able to support such a rapidly growing digital revolution. The future of mobile health is bright and we look forward to seeing what’s next for the medical industry.
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