Mobile Healthcare Apps

Embracing the Future: Why Your Healthcare Organization Needs a Mobile App

Embracing the Future: Why Your Healthcare Organization Needs a Mobile App

Healthcare apps have become indispensable, offering customised services that benefit both patients and stakeholders. Healthcare businesses realise that app development is an investment rather than an expense, adding convenience and providing potential for revenue generation through diverse channels.

Moreover, healthcare apps cater to various stakeholders: patients benefit from convenience, providers from streamlined communication, insurance companies from improved claims management, pharmaceutical companies from patient support, and public health organisations from mining data that help better decision and policy making.

Introduction 

Did you know that the word “App” was voted “Word of the Year” for 2010? Since the launch of smartphone apps in 2008, we now have an app for almost everything. One of the fastest-growing segments is healthcare app development, which is expected to surge from $56.26 billion in 2022 to an astounding $861.40 billion by 2030 at a CAGR of 40.2%. Such explosive growth indicates the deep integration of mHealth apps into our daily routines and the myriad opportunities they present.

This blog explores the edge healthcare companies could gain by building their own mobile apps. 

Customisation 

Healthcare companies can provide better patient-centred care and gain a competitive advantage by building custom apps over plug-and-play versions that offer limited personalisation. The benefits of custom apps include control over user experience and providing patients with easier access to healthcare services. 

Convenience

Much like Netflix revolutionised entertainment, healthcare mobile apps are transforming our access to medical services, offering features like medication reminders, pharmacy shopping, symptom checking and telemedicine options for convenient care - anytime, anywhere!

Healthcare appointment booking using apps is now taken for granted. Scheduling enables easy access to care and reduces waiting times, reminders improve patient adherence to treatments, while telemedicine offers convenience through remote consultations. 

In addition, features in mHealth apps provide the ease of everything a patient needs under a single umbrella - from medical health records blood reports, or prescriptions.  Mobile apps also support medication adherence, integrate with wearables, and educate consumers and patients about various health conditions. 

The benefits of receiving care virtually can, at times, be compounded. A  study by Hing Health found that PT(physical therapy) care receivers, over and above improving mobility and pain issues, had gotten better at dealing with depression and anxiety. 

New revenue channels 

Healthcare industries worldwide are facing the brunt of rising inflation, labour shortage, and recession headwinds that are stressing their bottom lines. Healthcare businesses are leveraging the popularity and adoption of healthcare apps and successfully converting them into revenue streams. 

A range of business models have been used to generate revenue:

1. The subscription and registration model 

Calm,  the meditation and mindfulness app, uses the premium subscription model, which gives a member access to exclusive content and advanced meditation programs.
ZocDoc on the other hand, charges doctors a monthly fee to remain registered and lets patients schedule appointments for free.

2. Localized ads

The key to localised ads in medical apps is to provide relevant advertising without disrupting the user experience. Some mobile ad partners use GPS and allied technology to serve real-time, location-based ads. For example, customers near a drugstore can be served a discount coupon for medicines and supplies if they are on the app.

3. Gamification

MySugr JR is a diabetes management app designed for kids and teens. It offers a playful and engaging interface to help young users monitor their blood sugar levels, track their meals, and an interactive way of learning about diabetes management.

4. Integration with Insurance service providers

The Oscar Health app integrates with insurance providers to offer policyholders access to their coverage, benefits, and claims. It simplifies digital payments and provides a user-friendly platform for managing insurance-related activities, enhancing the overall healthcare experience for users.

Big savings

While healthcare apps open up new revenue streams, they also help reduce costs. They are predicted to save over US $10 billion annually. Savings aren’t only limited to eliminating physical health records and inventory management or automating processes to reduce costly errors, but also through

  • Reduced stress for healthcare workers and significant savings for health agencies
  • Increased employee productivity by adopting digital health apps saves employers healthcare costs. This showcases the potential of long-term savings that make business sense and enhance the healthcare ecosystem. 

Create an impression with brand positioning

Healthcare companies can carve out a distinct brand presence by deploying intuitive, feature-packed mobile apps. By using tailored app experiences and deepening patient interactions, they bolster their brand and reputation and foster long-lasting patient loyalty.

Even though the Cleveland Clinic is a world-renowned healthcare organisation, it further enhances its brand presence through its “MyCleavelandClinic” app, which simplifies the way the HCO interacts with its patients and staff. 

What made the app stand out was not just its functionality but its user-friendly design and focus on patient-centric features. By offering a seamless digital experience that catered to modern patient needs, Cleveland Clinic was able to elevate its brand and set itself apart in the highly competitive healthcare landscape.

Frictionless payment  

A 2019 study found that out-of-pocket expenses for healthcare were 3% - 5% of household budgets in India. Americans owe an alarming $195 million in medical debt, even though 90% of the population has insurance. The cause, unsurprisingly, is many providers still use physical mail to send invoices and don't offer digital payment solutions. 

More than 85% of people across all age groups in the US use at least one mobile payment app. Therefore, an inbuilt payment method within a healthcare app should be a logical extension, like the Methodist My Care app.

Maximising stakeholder benefits

Apps encompass a range of services and benefits that help healthcare businesses and various stakeholders.  

(i) Patients: Healthcare apps empower users with a range of convenience features. The ZocDoc app connects patients with doctors and helps book appointments. The Medisafe app can track medication progress, send dose reminders, and trigger refill alerts. 

(ii) Providers: The healthcare app Pulsara simplifies medical care coordination during emergencies by enabling instant communication, sharing of data, and exchange of patient information.VisualDx app helps healthcare providers make better diagnoses by providing a reference visual database of various medical conditions and their symptoms.

(iii) Insurance Companies: The Cigna Envoy app makes the insurance process seamless by keeping in customer-focused so that they can manage health benefits and submit claims anywhere. 

(iv) Pharmaceutical Companies: Pharma companies can enhance patient education and support through their apps. Breast Cancer Trials' ASM app shares research on breast cancer. It advances breast cancer knowledge through experts discussing clinical trials, treatments, and innovations. Besides support and medication, the cancer support app Living With provides knowledge resources and connects patients with caregivers.

(v) Public Health Organizations: Health organisations worldwide are working to create favourable health policies and strategies that benefit the masses. In addition to surveys and national registry data, tapping into mobile apps to digitally capture data at the source can also be beneficial.

Conclusion

Mobile apps in healthcare are firmly setting their footprint! They're not just a trend; they're becoming an integral part of how we approach health and wellness. They help patients get more involved in their own care, make things smoother for medical professionals and providers across the care delivery cascade and can even create new business opportunities. For those in the industry, using these mhealth apps can mean better patient relationships, improved clinical outcomes and an edge in the market if they leverage the technology to its fullest potential. Simply put, the future of healthcare will likely be influenced by how well we adopt and use these mobile tools.

At Montar Healthtech, we specialise in building custom mobile apps tailored to the unique needs of healthcare companies. Contact us today to learn more about how we can help you leverage the power of mobile technology to step up healthcare delivery.

Key Takeaways

  1. mHealth apps fulfil an array of our healthcare needs and have become an indispensable part of our lives
  2. Custom mobile apps for healthcare businesses help them gain competitive advantage, control user experience, and develop long-term relationships with their customers
  3. mHealth apps add convenience to patients’ lives. For healthcare companies, the apps create brand impressions, save costs, and offer new streams of revenues 
  4. Integration with health insurance payment is another pain point that mHealth apps are solving
  5. Not only patients and healthcare service providers but also insurance companies, public health organisations, and pharmaceutical companies are taking advantage of the benefits of mHealth apps.
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Dr. Lakshmi Vaswani
Dr. Lakshmi Vaswani

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