Mobiles as medical advisor!

A very popular cellular network brand has just released a commercial which shows an old couple enjoying a cake, after their e-medical advisor confirmed their blood-sugar levels to be ok. This less than 2 minute advertisement says it all! The power of androids, 4G, and the on-the-go connectivity has made mobile phones and tablets a mass appeal for all strata and every need!

Apps, web-based platforms, are some of the arenas where big techies are committed to playing a catalytic role to enhance and empower healthcare services by breaking geographical barriers and ensuring uniformity in quality of diagnosis and recommendations. With the US FDA having released guidelines for medical app designers, the blue print is indeed set for a technological leap in healthcare.

Power of a simple mobile app;
  • - Data collection from mobile devices followed by monitoring vital signs
  • - Real time data and report sharing with healthcare service provider/physician
  • - Virtual digital service for follow-up appointments
  • - Patient education
  • - Increased patient interaction with service providers and care givers

Medical apps in mobile phones have also been associated with lowering the stigma associated with many conditions like mental illnesses. Many applications are in the testing stages which have been designed to detect early changes in moods, related to bipolar disorder by mapping a simple voice pattern change post tracking everyday phone conversations. Smartphone data mining studies have also shown to identify signs of depression and stress.

Though the power of technology has revolutionized many aspects of diagnosis, treatment and management, bridging the gap in quality of service effectively, a line of thought does specify the need for a human touch to be significant in all roles. Fear of hacking, data privacy, bugs in heuristic learning algorithms, etc. are all the cons associated with making a 100% e-doctor. Judicial use of medial apps parallel to personal intervention becomes a necessity, as popularly highlighted even by the Doctor-Writer marvel Robin Cook in his famous novel “Cell”, which discusses iDoc.

For now, we can safely say, for a generation of people who largely depend on “Google” for a second opinion or general reading, medical apps still become a more robust tool to gain accurate information sourced rightfully.

Happy Connecting!