The Digital Application Economy By @JackieKahle | @ThingsExpo [#IoT]
With today’s constant technology advancements, increase of app startups and consumer centric focus, the healthcare industry is b
By: Jackie Kahle
May. 2, 2015 09:00 AM
Healthcare's Ultimate Makeover by the Digital Application Economy
After making a doctor’s appointment via your mobile device, you receive a calendar invite. The day of your appointment, you get a reminder with the doctor’s location and contact information. As you enter the doctor’s exam room, the medical team is equipped with the latest tablet containing your medical history – he or she makes real time updates to your medical file. At the end of your visit, you receive an electronic prescription to your preferred pharmacy and can schedule your next appointment.
Instantly, you get a notification on your mobile device about updates that been made to your patient portal including notes from your doctor pertaining to your visit. As you look though the notes, you remember a question you had for the doctor, so you send a secured email on the patient portal. Later on, you can review your past exam results, request to transfer test results to specialists, search for referrals and or download medical history. Each time you visit a doctor or specialists in your network your files can be accessed to ensure a smooth visit.
This is not a vision of the future, it happened to me last month. My health provider has had basic Electronic Health Records (EHR) and a patient portal for at least four years, and iPhone and Android apps for the last two. What is astonishing is how few healthcare organizations are actually doing the same.
The emphasis of EHRs
In 2009,the U.S. Government provided a big push to EHRs by encouraging creation of EHRs with the enactment of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA), which included $19.2 billion to increase the use of EHRs by physicians. More recently, the Affordable Care Act also specified new rules encouraging EHRs.
Despite these financial incentives and the clear and compelling data that shows effective use of EHRs can save money and lives (see http://www.healthit.gov/providers-professionals/why-adopt-ehrs) adoption has been very slow. In 2014, only 48% of healthcare provider organizations and physicians had implemented basic EHRs, and the results vary greatly by state – with New Jersey (where I was born, I am sorry to say) hitting the bottom of the list at 21%.
Of course, the obstacles are not to be discounted either and include security concerns, costs, data migration issues, lack of interoperability standards, culture and many more.
The app economy results in healthcare industry action
From fitness apps to real-time health monitoring via body sensors, these apps are collecting several hundred million vital parameters per month. But how will all this data get consolidated and become easily accessible to doctors and patients if healthcare organizations have not put in place the infrastructure (including EHRs) and the front-end apps to support it? Consumers are going to be increasingly vocal to their doctors in demanding ways they can easily access all their consolidated health data.
Healthcare in the application economy today
This global survey clearly indicates that the healthcare industry has significant work ahead of it. Beyond the risk of not being able to satisfy consumer expectations, healthcare companies also run the risk of major industry disruption by new digital-based healthcare providers who are entering the market with very different approaches, all enabled through new technology. Whether they can be as successful in a challenging industry such as healthcare as similar companies in other industries remains to be seen, but established healthcare organizations should be wary and seriously looking at putting in place digital transformation initiatives to position themselves for long-term survival.
After all, while healthcare is certainly not the first industry to be affected by the app economy, in many ways, it may be the most important to our future success and well-being.
For more information on the Vanson Bourne study on the overall application economy, see How to Survive and Thrive in the Application Economy and "8 Steps to Modernize Security for the Application Economy", which details the security and API-related data shared above.
SOA World Latest Stories
Subscribe to the World's Most Powerful Newsletters
Subscribe to Our Rss Feeds & Get Your SYS-CON News Live!
SYS-CON Featured Whitepapers
Most Read This Week