Digital Technology + Mobile Apps: The Path to Better Patient Engagement

welocalize August 26, 2019

How are digital technology and mobile apps trending in 2019 and how are these movements going to change the life sciences industry? Goldman Sachs says the digital revolution could save healthcare providers $300 billion. Welocalize Life Sciences shares some of the latest trends and news specific to mHealth, patient engagement apps, and portals.

More Patients Are Accessing Information via Portals

A recent study by the Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology revealed that over 50% of patients surveyed have access their health records online. Further, among those who have access via portals, 58% viewed their data at least once in 2018 — up from 53% in 2017.

Why should the industry take note of this development? Access to information online is an effective way to engage with patient populations. However, there are common design flaws that can impede mHealth use—but also can be easily avoided—including lack of contrast between text and links, language accessibility, or not enough space between clickable areas. In addition, according to Zion Research, the global mHealth apps market is expected to generate around US$111.1 billion by 2025, at a CAGR of around 38.26%; creating significant opportunities for engagement, as well as for manufacturers, providers, and, ultimately, trial outcomes.

Opportunities at Your Fingertips (Literally)

Patients are people, and people are consumers. We are increasingly reliant on apps for immediate access to things we need (and want) on our mobile devices. According to SNS Research, the use of mHealth devices and apps is already widespread in clinical trials, and pharmaceutical companies are setting their sights on connected drug delivery platforms that will automatically detect and log patient’s medication use to improve adherence.  

Why should the industry take note of this development?

According to a recent article in The Journal of mHealth, “Bringing clinical trial commitments, documents, information, and data into this friendly and accepted frame, from recruitment through closeout and beyond, can transform the patient experience, data quality and operational efficiency of your global programs.”

Top Three Things Done via Mobile Health Apps

With the number of mobile phone users reaching 4.8 billion worldwide, we use our mobile devices for nearly everything. For healthcare providers to better connect with patients, the implementation of mobile apps that meet their needs is crucial. According to a recent survey by SOTI, the top three things patients use mobile apps for are: Scheduling appointments (70%), viewing lab results (52%) and requesting prescriptions (40%). While these mobile apps provide patients with speed and convenience at their fingertips, for healthcare providers, according to SOTI, the most beneficial aspect of these mobile apps is that nearly half (46%) of all patients are more likely to schedule follow-up visits.

In Case You Missed It

Data, Digitization, and Industry Disruption: Our summary of the highlights and key takeaways from the DIA 2019 Annual Meeting, where AI was a hot topic. At Welocalize Life Sciences, our solutions for machine learning enable data scientists to annotate multilingual data to improve the performance of AI models.

Smartphones Uncover Diseases: A team of scientists in South Korea and the United States have invented a device that can control neural circuits by using a tiny brain implant managed by a smartphone. According to Nature Biomedical Engineering, researchers said the soft neural implant is the first wireless neural device capable of delivering multiple drugs and color lights. The device could speed up efforts to uncover brain diseases, such as Parkinson’s, Alzheimer’s, and depression.

If your organization is interested in global app development, increasing patient engagement, or reaching more patients through targets and localized outreach, contact Welocalize Life Sciences.