Changes are happening in every area of healthcare, including mobile technology and devices. Tom Barnett, VP of Health Information Technology at NorthShore University HealthSystem, speaks of the need for a 'structured approach' in his article on the HIMSS (Healthcare Information and Management Systems Society) website.
Mobile health has gained momentum and in the words of Dr. Eric Topol, a strong proponent for mHealth, “These days I am prescribing as many apps as I am medications.” The use of the smartphone along with the growing need to manage the growth of chronic diseases for those 65 and over, are a smart combination.
Barnett states, “Today’s methods for monitoring and treating multiple chronic diseases and health in general will have to change. There is clearly a need for a more innovative approach to dealing with these challenges and mobile health (or mHealth) technology is positioning itself to be that innovative approach.”
As the healthcare industry struggles with trying to move from being a 'volume-based to a value-based' industry, IT leaders, physicians and industry experts must consider how this applies to mobile health technology as well. It’s time to put the right strategic framework in place. To help in this area, HIMISS has put together a roadmap that will enable this process to proceed as smoothly as possible. It includes key issues such as:
- Data standards
- Device integration
- Physician workflow and usefulness
- Data integration back into the EMR
- App usability by the patient
Mobility is a new road the entire industry must travel down together. Flexibility, as well as trial and error, must be factored into the roadmap.