Patients, providers overwhelmingly believe mHealth tools boost quality of life

An overwhelming number of patients and providers see mobile as a promising platform when it comes to both prevention and treatment of healthcare-related issues, according to a recent study.

The study, conducted by Research Now, reports 96 percent of consumers believe health apps will boost quality of life. More than three quarters of healthcare professionals, 86 percent, view health apps as a viable way of increasing knowledge on patients' conditions and 72 percent believe mHealth apps will foster greater patient responsibility for personal health, according to an announcement on the report. In addition, 46 percent of healthcare professionals intend to introduce mobile apps to their practice in the next five years.

Yet, at this point, just 16 percent are using mHealth tech in their practice, the report adds. The study features insight from 500 healthcare professionals and 1,000 health app users in the U.S.

The new study aligns with findings from the fifth annual "Pulse of Online Health," conducted by Makovsky Health/Kelton, that says roughly two-thirds of Americans are enthusiastic about tapping digital tools for managing personal health. It also matches up with Mary Annecharico's prediction of an impending mHealth transformation. The chief information officer at Henry Ford Health Systems states, in a CIO Review commentary, that the transformation will bring improved coordination of care, elimination of redundancy and inefficiency, shared accountability and active patient involvement in healthcare efforts.

The Research Now survey polled caregivers on the use of smartphone tech and their views on greatest potential for use. Fifty-five percent said the tech has the potential to help healthy people stay healthy, and 48 percent see potential to help those leaving a hospital stay. A bigger number, 76 percent, believe the technology can help those dealing with chronic diseases and 61 percent believe the tools can help those who are at risk of developing health issues.

"Patients are gathering data about their condition or treatment, ultimately improving their health, or perhaps reducing visits to a physician. Apps are improving healthcare professionals' knowledge of their patients, while patients feel a lift in their quality of life. Obviously, there is a huge opportunity for the use of these apps," Vincent DeRobertis, senior vice president of Global Healthcare at Research Now, says in the announcement. 

For more information:
- read the announcement