Mobile health revolution could save lives


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Mobile health revolution could save lives
The focus is shifting from ‘sick care’ to care monitored around the clock, with apps to meet the need.

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Mobile health revolution could save lives

  1. 1. Mobile health revolution could save livesMobile health revolution could save livesThe focus is shifting from ‘sick care’ to care monitored around theclock, with apps to meet the need.By Ann Tracy Mueller | Posted: October 10, 2011Health care isnt just about being sick any more. Now mobiletechnology is making it 24/7.Mobile Beat calls it the "brave new world of health care," as they shareinformation about wellness, chronic diseases, and the elderly, and lookat obstacles they see to this mobile health revolution.
  2. 2. Mobile health revolution could save livesWant to stay well?Mobile health (mHealth) apps for wellness include apps for fitness, nutrition andgeneral well-being. They can be preventive tools for diseases such as heartdisease, diabetes, and cancer.Here are some intriguing mHealth wellness items: Endomondo: An app, which uses GPS to track distances covered in sports like running and cycling. Allows users to share the results. Hidalgo: Makes wearable sensors to track vital signs like heart rate and send data back to a central server. Used for firefighters to avoid heat stress and by the US Marine Corps for soldiers in Iraq. Anti-sleep pilot: An iPhone app to help prevent fatigue-related driving accidents.Have a chronic disease?More than three-quarters of health care spending is on chronic diseasessuch as diabetes and heart disease. Mobile Beat says health allianceContinua reports remote monitoring can reduce mortality by 35 to 56percent and hospitalization by as much as 47 percent.For diabetes, theres mobile-based phone system, Welldoc, to measure,monitor, and manage chronic diseases. It allows for continuouscommunication between patients and care providers using data loggedthrough a patients mobile phone.Other monitoring devices, such as glucose meters, blood pressure monitorsand mobile ultrasound continue to get smaller and more sophisticated.Theres even a smartphone with a built-in electrocardiogram (ECG).
  3. 3. Mobile health revolution could save livesNeed to look after the elderly?You wouldnt believe all the things that are out there to help you takecare or stay connected with the elderly.Independa is a system that combines sensors, tablets, and mobiletechnology so caregivers can monitor the well-being of elderly familymembers. Indpenda also provides access to services they need.It includes: Angela: An Android tablet with one-touch access to email, Facebook, video chat, and more. Its also a hub for data gathered by health, environment, and activity sensors. Health sensors: From scales and pulse oximeters to blood pressure monitors. Environment and activity monitors: To track things such as air temperature, whether the person tracked got out of bed or whether a door is open. They can even alert you if your relative is in his or her house but hasnt opened the refrigerator.Whats the hold-up?One of the biggest obstacles to the mHealth revolution is low awarenessamong both patients and health care practitioners. And, though consumersare ready to make the investment in wellness apps, its still an uphill battleconvincing insurers and employers that mHealth can reduce medical costs.
  4. 4. Mobile health revolution could save lives“People can take care of themselves to the extent of 90%, if they are served with the right informationat the right time.” Says Dr. Chitalia of Acroseas Global Solutions. With the rapid growth in thedevelopment and commercialization of smart phone applications the information is not only circulatedwell, but also circulated effectively. The ‘willingness to act is an individual’s call, but accuracy and easyaccessibility of information becomes primordial when it comes to healthcare issues and medicaltreatments.