500 million people will use smartphone health apps by 2015

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Smartphones have long been gaining attraction in the health care field. Smartphone apps have increased at an amazing rate in past few years.  In November, three days mHealth Alliance Summit was held in Washington D.C. discussed the ways of mobile technology can increase the access, efficiency and effectiveness of health systems. The summit organized by the Foundation for the National Institutes of Health, the mHealth Alliance and NIH. More than 2,000 professionals from the U.S. and 30 other countries attended the event. Major findings of the summit are as follows:

Global Mobile Health Market Report 2010-2015
According to the report- In 2015, there will be 1.4 billion smartphone users and 500 million of them will be using mobile health apps. Ralf-Gordon Jahns, lead researcher of the report said “Our findings indicate that the long-expected mobile revolution in health care is set to happen.” Both health care providers and consumers are embracing smartphones as a means to improving health care.

The report cited that out of the 17,000 mHealth apps available in online stores, 74% of those adhere to a paid, compensatory business model.  As we move forward, more and more traditional healthcare providers will join the mobile apps market that will further broaden the utility and aspects of health care services. Currently a significant number (43%) of mHealth applications are primarily designed for healthcare professionals. These include CME (Continued Medical Education), remote monitoring and health care management applications.

 




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Bill Gates:
Mobile technology can help improve global health
During the conference, Microsoft founder Bill Gates said that mobile technology are expected to improve global health by immunization programs and offering low cost diagnostic tools to combat many of the world’s diseases.

NIH: Planning to provide 150 grants toward mHealth
NIH Director Francis Collins, MD, called mHealth “a growing opportunity.” He added that the agency is planning to provide 150 grants toward mHealth.  “It’s time to take advantage of the marriage of mobile technology and research. The research will include the use of mobile phones, telehealth and GPS.”

Aneesh Chopra, U.S. Chief Technology Officer, told attendees at the summit that cloud computing and improved connectivity are likely to speed up the process by which mobile health innovations go from ideas to implementation.

Mobile health technology shows tremendous promise to deliver healthcare and perform health-related monitoring. However, the market is still in emerging state and time will prove the potential of the technologies in the health care.

Source: cbc; AFP; Research2guidance

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