According to a survey, a total of 325,000 mobile health apps were made available in 2017. The same report reveals that the Google Play Store saw a 50% increase in the number of health apps while iOS saw a 20% increase. This, along with the fact that early stage investment in digital health startups was worth $5.4 billion (USD) in 2016, elucidates the growth trajectory of the digital health-care industry.
These market trends reaffirm the general consensus that the unifying mHealth apps and Internet of Things (IoT) enable better monitoring of health data. To meet consumer expectations, healthcare providers are beginning to use digital technologies to leverage and optimize the way health platforms and mobile apps connect with each other. Some of these are listed below, with a few examples of how they can impact an individual’s health and improve the efficiency of health services. These include:
- Smartphones and mobile apps: provide fast and comprehensive access to a patient’s medical records or drug dosage calculations.
- Digital medical records: allow hospitals to consolidate medical data. This central repository of information lets hospitals identify patterns and causes of impoverished health, enabling better diagnosis and more suitable treatments
- Health apps: These are one of the fastest growing categories of downloaded and used apps. They complement smart devices such as Fitbit and Apple Watch and are equipped with activity tracking sensors that record movements, altitude, geo-location and heart rate. Some devices even measure UV doses, skin temperature, and skin conductance of their users.
The aforementioned examples of how mHealth apps and devices impact people’s health is supported by a study that was conducted by Johns Hopkins University and co-funded by Aetna and a Colorado-based incubator which incubated Playpal. Their findings show that technology is key for enabling optimal health solutions and incentivizing users.
Health platforms like Playpal have used these findings to develop sustainable solutions for users’ health. By using artificial intelligence and blockchain, Playpal’s Platform consolidates and integrates IoT data in order to provide personalized recommendations, helpful alerts, and predictive and preventative analysis of an individual’s health. Principally, health tech Platforms like Playpal allow users to self-monitor their health and enable them to build on their health capital. Thankfully, this culture of self-management of health is expected to become more widespread and may, eventually, lead to a healthier global population.
Evidently, mHealth apps are rising in popularity because of the incredible usefulness and efficiency they offer to the health industry. New technologies and devices that automatically identify a user’s activity, offer advice, provide health warnings, and even save anomalous incidents for a specialist’s review, are now emerging . Because these revolutionary devices/apps can now collect and manage data more efficiently, they may help reduce costs of medical supervision in the long-run. Playpal is one such platform that is playing it’s part in this mHealth revolution.