According to a survey conducted by the Healthcare Information and Management Systems Society, healthcare mobile apps and mobile technology in general have offered multiple benefits. The Healthcare Information and Management Systems Society also chose the HIMSS 2015 conference to announce the results of a survey conducted on 238 healthcare IT professionals in which they were asked about the use of mobile technology by their employers.
The use of mobile technology has exploded in recent years, and the healthcare industry has not fallen behind. The survey suggests that the majority of healthcare providers have now embraced mobile technology, and better still, it is having a positive effect driving down costs and improving the care that can be provided to patients.
The survey shows that many healthcare providers have managed to improve preventative medical support care, with 24% of respondents saying that they have seen improvements. Telehealth services have been developed further and these have improved in 23% of cases. Mobile technology has improved the use of resources of 21% of the respondents’ employers.
It is clear that there is still some room for improvement, and once the use of the technology becomes more established, many more organizations will start to see the benefits. The technology is still in its infancy in the healthcare industry, with only 18% of respondents saying their employer’s mobile health technology environment was mature.
One of the main obstacles to implementing mobile health technology is the cost; however this investment is required in order for the benefits to be realized. Those benefits should, over time, help to improve the way care is provided to patients as well as improve efficiencies which will drive down operational costs.
The survey showed that half of the organizations were finding the cost of implementing mobile technologies in healthcare was an issue. In spite of this, 73% of organizations had implemented app-enabled patient portals, while just under a third (30%) had developed healthcare mobile apps. 30% of respondents claimed that health apps were in the process of being developed by their employers.
While the benefits of healthcare mobile apps are now being realized, the issue of security has been raised. 57% of respondents indicated that policies had yet to be developed to cover mobile technology although a third said that their organizations were currently developing policies to cover privacy and security of data.