Tuesday, December 06, 2011

Role of Patient Education and Monitoring of their Medical Compliance

Here are some notes from a very interesting panel as part of the ongoing the Mobile Health Summit. With the proliferation of mobile health apps and remote monitoring technologies it has become particularly important for compliance, patient data and education. Some of the innovators in the field shared their views on this topic.

Eric Schultz talked about the importance of 'practical ambition' for mobile health services companies which has been a focus for QuantiaMD.

Mobile Health Information Seekers Exhibit Heightened Urgency, Emotion
Distractions is one of the main reasons for lack of patient adherence. Apparently, only 6% continue to use an app 4 weeks after they have downloaded them. Now, imagine the patient engagement if your doctor prescribes you a mobile health app! (in addition to the credibility factor) I guess this brings the whole gamification aspect into a new perspective. Everyone knows why referrals are more effective in general and mobile health apps/services could define a new aspect to the doctor patient relationship.

Logistimo uses the cloud through mobile phone technology to address supply chain issues. They have a very impressive supply chain model applied to the Bottom of the Pyramid (BoP) and would be interesting to learn about the applicability for patient data.

John de Souza talked about MedHelp which is one of the largest online health community helping patients manage their health. It is amazing to see the data been collected my such sites and at an aggregate level these could provide valuable insights about our health.

The stats shared on nationwide exercise data were interesting, like on an average people exercise 44 minutes/week. Better tools are needed to communicate with patients and the condition specific health applications are very relevant. Critical thing is integration of different devices that gives everyone the capability to interact with data whenever you want at your convenience.

Who pays for the mobile health business models?
  • You have to be around to make an impact and deliver real value. 
  • If you have a bad solution & make it mobile then all you have is a bad mobile solution. 
  • Tactful compliant ways to engage sponsors, third party organizations and insurers. 
  • Economies of scale do play a big part when you think about customers paying for mobile health. (volume of consumer base will make it sustainable)   
  • Physicians have an opinion which concludes this part really well. They need an effective patient solution which provides the right education, proper care and effective outcomes. It is important to have quick turnaround times for patients in doctors clinics without increasing the workload for the physicians since the current clinician supply chain is overworked
  • Unbranded education by pharmaceutical companies or similar programs.

Top criteria to develop the mobile health 'Angry Birds' version
  • Interoperability across platforms/devices
  • Simplicity in terms of communication with the users (think healthcare vocabulary)
  • Play on the psychology of the patient in a positive manner (gamification)

  • FDA without doubt is a major impediment
  • HIPAA prevents collaboration (patients are ready to share the data if it makes us healthier)
  • Misalignment in incentives within the ecosystem

An interesting question from the audience was around cultural aspects for healthcare and mobile apps.

Cultural disparities in care delivery are happening. Healthcare is going to be rationed and unfortunately the economic reality is that the same services won't be available everywhere. CareFusion is another organization providing insights on healthcare costs and focusing on medication errors and hospital-acquired infections.

There is a difference between a business user and consumer (monetize the BoP network).

Here is a link to watch other videos at the mHealth Summit.

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