Internet user experience expert Joe Arcuri helps cut through the confusion when it comes to...
Mobile Healthcare Industry
Indeed, the generation raised on computers expects to use technology in today’s healthcare workplace. According to Kansas City, MO-based integrated marketing agency Nicholson Kovac, Inc., physicians and nurses frequently use mobile text messages for personal and professional communications, while also using mobile devices to connect with research on clinical and academic topics.4
In its recently released “Future of Physician Media” report, New York City-based firm Man-hattan Research finds that while U.S. physicians currently use mobile devices primarily to access clinical content and perform quick tasks, they “will significantly expand the range of activities they conduct on mobile devices by 2012” to include “administrative functions, learning and patient care.”5
Also from Manhattan Research: led by derma-tologists and medical oncologists, 39 percent of U.S. physicians overall currently e-mail, secure message or instant message their patients—a 14 percent increase since 2006. “We find that those physicians connecting with their patients online are more likely to be accessing the Internet during patient consultations and using various forms of health IT across the board,” said Erika S. Fishman, the firm’s director of Research.6
Promising, too, are forecasts of a robust future for wireless health. Dallas-based research firm Parks Associates projects a five-year cumulative annual growth rate of over 180 percent for the U.S. wireless home-based healthcare applications and services market, becoming a $4.4 billion industry in 2013. “Wireless is an important crossover point for the healthcare sector and high-tech industry,” said Parks Associates’ director of Health & Mobile Product Research Harry Wang. “Device and service connectivity is the model for future home care applications, and mobile networks will link a growing number of monitoring products to healthcare providers.”7
Encouraging as these indicators are, wireless health represents a technological evolution all its own, unique in its scope of coverage. Google may have pronounced that “the future of healthcare is mobile”8 just as it pronounced mobility as the future of the Internet and of advertising, but when human outcomes are on the line, the rules of patient- and consumer-side engagement are not quite as straightforward.