mHealth by Team A


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This is a presentation about the many uses of mHealth (mobile health) on mobile devices. It was made by Team A for our Social Media class.

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mHealth by Team A

  1. 1. mHealth A team effort by Laura, Lucinda, Matty, Michelle and Olivia
  2. 2. What is mHealth? The use of mobile technologies (including phones, tablets and net books) to improve public health (Gruber & Koutroumpis 2010 p30).
  3. 3. Getting Mobile: Weight Management • • • • • Mobile apps are commonly use by people to track diet patterns and monitor their health including calorie counting and food consumption. The mobile device market offers different applications to suit individual needs. Some of these include: „MyFitnessPal‟ is free and the most popular (GooglePlay). This app offers an extensive nutritional database of foods and a social networking community ( „Lose it!‟, like, „MyFitnessPal‟ has the ability to scan barcodes for nutritional value as well as track both food intake and exercise output. „Diet Assistant‟ provides its users with personalized, structured meal plans and recommendations (SMH 2013). „It does not entirely rely on counting calories but also provides other diet monitoring options.
  4. 4. Getting Mobile: Weight Management • “Spark People‟ can search restaurant items and gives the generic nutritional and calorie values (Lifehacker 2013). • Medical research shows that metabolism, which is controlled by the body‟s hormones, is a major factor in a person‟s weight (CBN 2008). Nutritional expert Doctor Lopez has found that in order to lose weight, people must combine calorie intake and the body‟s ability to manage fat storage, which is controlled by the metabolism (CBN 2008). • Furthermore, with the popularity of free apps (Flurry 2013), it is likely that many complex, psychological mobile apps will give users a more tools at low cost for weight management.
  5. 5. mHealth & Mental Health Apps for mental health include: • 'BellyBio' and 'Deep Sleep' - teaches the user breathing and relaxation techniques. • 'eCBT Calm' and 'DBT Diary Card' offer a cognitive behavioral approach by guiding its users through depression or anxiety episodes and enable the user to track their progress or changes. There are even apps to help those with suicidal thoughts (Kiume 2013).
  6. 6. mHealth & Mental Health • Apps are used by health professionals to facilitate the treatment of young patients (Reid et al 2012). Patients can track their moods and stresses and then share the information for discussion in face-to-face sessions. This means doctors can quickly obtain accurate information and understand their patient better (Reid et al 2012). • The psychologist, Dr Carr-Gregg argues that mobile devices are under-utilised (cited in Gallasch 2013). He argues that mental illness among young people is increasing and utilising phone apps for a computer savvy generation is essential. • Apps should be designed with data, security and privacy safety and be subject to minimum standard regulations (Luxton et al 2011).
  7. 7. Our Mobile Globe • Mobile devices improve global health services in a number of ways such as patients being reminded of appointments and doctors managing patient‟s conditions. Mobile technology can reach remote areas as mobile coverage is constantly improving. Global mHealth is accessible, effective and efficient.
  8. 8. Our Mobile Globe • SMS or text-based campaigns improve and share health information with people who lack reliable Internet access (Gruber & Koutroumpis 2010). According to the World health Organisation 2012 survey there are over 5 billion people in the world who have phone plans subscriptions making it the biggest platform for sharing information‟‟ (Batavia et al 2012 p26). Mobile Health gives people greater knowledge and access to medical experts in real – time. (Batavia et al 2010)
  9. 9. mHealth & Fitness • People are turning to mobile apps to keep fit and there are a large number to choose from. • Brooker, V (2013) stated “keeping track of your goals and documenting your experiences helps you stay motivated by allowing you to see both big and small successes”. With most people using smart phones on a day-to-day basis it makes it easier to stay connected with personal goals. Applications such as „Nike + GPS‟ allows the user to map running routes and track progress using their IPhone. The application, which costs $1.99, gives motivation in the form of messages and cheers and
  10. 10. mHealth & Fitness • Applications such as these are also linked through to other social media platforms such as Facebook allowing the user to gain encouraging comments from friends and family to stay on track with their personal progress. • Increasing healthy behaviours can be difficult but an application such as „7 minutes‟ allows the user to stop and begin a simple work out which lasts on seven minutes. This work out is designed to be completed in any environment from a gym, hotel room or even a work office.
  11. 11. mhealth: Getting Diagnosed • Waxer (CIO 2010) reports that patients who enter small regional medical facilities where there are few specialists, if any, are able to have their scans and data assessed by specialist teams in large urban hospitals in real time. Scans and other patient information is uploaded onto cloud platforms and accessed then through the Doctors phones. Doctors are finding that scans are actually better viewed through their phones than a backlit box because of high resolution and zoom features on the touch screen. Diagnosis can happen quickly and accurately thousands of kilometres from the consulting Physician.
  12. 12. mHealth: Getting Diagnosed • Hughes, M.D. (ABC 2010) explains that mobiles have enabled research into the spread of Malaria. In just one year, Africans sent 15 million txt messages to researchers, who were then able to map out a comprehensive analysis of the movement and spread of the disease. As a result txt messages are sent to people to warn them of Malaria hot spots. People can txt their symptoms to the health services and self-diagnosis can be made quickly to minimise the spread of infectious diseases. • Pregnant women can be connected to medical consultants and their concerns can be dealt with immediately when they don‟t have the money, resources or health to travel. Early diagnosis helps keep mortality rates low for babies and mothers (mHealth Tanzania 2013). • An App used by The Parkinson‟s Voice Initiative involves people talking into their mobiles and a diagnosis, which is 99% accurate, can be made to detect whether that person has signs of Parkinson‟s. Tests using mobile phones are non-invasive, use existing infrastructure, are accurate, can happen remotely, don‟t need expertise skills, are high speed, cost very little and can be done on a mass scale (Little TED 2013).
  13. 13. Conclusion • mHealth is changing the way we access and deliver information • Mobile phones are used in the diagnosis and treatment of patients which is especially beneficial for those living in remote areas • Mobile phones are used in the management of infectious disease • Phone applications are starting to be incorporated into the treatment of mental illness, however, this is arguably an area yet to reach its full potential especially among young people • Many people utilise phone applications to assist with calorie counting for weight loss, however, this is not yet a proven successful strategy • Many people also use mobile devices to track their fitness progress and keep motivated • mHealth is a new and exciting field and few studies have documented its actual success • We believe mobile devices increase accessibility to health services and information and ultimately save lives
  14. 14. References Batavia. H Kaonga, Mechael . P, (2012) “Barriers and Gaps Affecting MHealth in Low and Middle Income Countries”, Columbia University Center for Global Health and Economic Development. (Pp 23-30) „The-Digital-Health-Diagnosis-Inforgraphic‟ (image), The Digital Health Diagnosis Infographic, viewed 22 November 2013, Entner. R, (2012) “The Wireless Industry: The Essential Engine of U.S. Economic Growth”, Recon Analytics, May 2012, pp. 30-33. Gallasch, R 2013, „Apps have potential for mental health benefits‟, The Examiner, 16 September 2013. Google Play. 2013. Top Free in Android Apps. [online] Available at: [Accessed: 15 Nov 2013]. Gordon, M. 2013. The History of App Pricing, And Why Most Apps Are Free. Flurry, [blog] July 18, Available at: [Accessed: 15 Nov 2013]. Gruber. H& Koutroumpis. P, (2010) “Mobile Telecommunications and the Impact on Economic Development”, Centre for Economic Policy Research, New York City. Accessed on November 13th 2013. Henry, A. 2013. Five Best Food and Nutrition Tracking Tools. [online] Available at: [Accessed: 15 Nov 2013]. Hughes, L, M.D., 2010, Tracking Malaria with cell phones, ABC News, 11 October 2012, viewed 12 November 2013, Kiume, S 2013, „Top 10 Mental Health Apps.‟, Psych Central. Retrieved on November 17, 2013, from Laura Prusik, 2013, 6 apps to track fitness goals and boost motivation, Wellcommunity, viewed 18 November 2013, Lopez, D. n.d. Why Counting Calories Doesn't Work. [online] Available at: [Accessed: 15 Nov 2013]. Luxton, D, McCann, R, Bush, N, Mishkind, M, & Reger, G 2011, 'mHealth for mental health: Integrating smartphone technology in behavioral healthcare', Professional Psychology: Research And Practice, 42, 6, pp. 505-512, PsycARTICLES, EBSCOhost, viewed 16 November 2013. Mobigyann. 2013. Smartphone sales to outweigh feature phone sales. [online] Available at: [Accessed: 24 Nov 2013]. 2013. Free Calorie Counter, Diet & Exercise Journal. [online] Available at: [Accessed: 15 Nov 2013]. „MyFitnessPal‟ (image), MobiHealthNews: “11 free apps that might be eating away at Weight Watchers‟ earnings, viewed 21 November 2013, „My-journey-screenshot‟ (image), Developing a mental health App: my experience, viewed 21 November 2013, „Nike GPS App‟ (image),, viewed 21 November 2013, Reid, S, Khor, A, Hearps, S, Sanci L, Kennedy, A & Patton, G 2012, „Using mobile phone application in youth mental health‟, Australian Family Physician Vol. 41. No. 9, pp. 711 – 714. „Screenshot 2012-06-09 at 3.30.16 AM‟ (image), 3 Promising Mobile Diagnosis Apps for Medical Practitioners, viewed 22 November 2013, „Smartphone-shrink-01-0212-de‟ (image), Smartphone Shrink: 5 apps to help your mental health, viewed 21 November 2013, 2013. Study Says Diet Apps Do Not Work. [online] Available at: [Accessed: 15 Nov 2013]. TED talks, 2013, TED, Max Little: A test for Parkinson‟s with a phone call, 7 Aug 2012, viewed 12 November 2013, „Types of Apps in Health & Fitness Catergory‟ (image), MobiHealthNews: “Tipping Point or Pufferish”, viewed 21 November 2013, Waxer, C, 2010, Mobile App Saves Lives, CIO, vol. 24, no. 3, viewed 12 November mHealth Tanzania, 2013, Healthy Pregnancy, Healthy Baby Text messaging sevices in 2013, SOL ELibrary. Tanzania, 13 February 2013, viewed 12 November 2013,
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