Ten predictions for the mobile health market

By: Chris Gullo | Aug 26, 2011        

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Doctor ReportOver the past three years, research firms including InMedica, Juniper, Chilmark, ABI, In-Stat, IDC, and Manhattan have been predicting the future size of and eventual revenues generated by mobile health services. This week MobiHealthNews has compiled its list of ten predictions for the next five years of mobile health — including prognostications for both consumer and enterprise — beginning with one that has already come to pass.

81 percent of physicians using smartphones by 2012

Manhattan Research has repeatedly predicted that by 2012, 81 percent of physicians would own a smartphone. That level of adoption already occurred in 2011, according to a May 2011 report from Manhattan. The original prediction came from a 2010 Taking the Pulse report, which tracked physician adoption rates of various information technologies. In 2001 only about 30 percent of physicians used smartphones, while in 2009 some 64 percent of physicians were users. Physician smartphone adoption outpaces the general US adult population’s adoption of smartphones, which now stands at just north of 30 percent.

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CentricityRemote Patient Monitoring $1.9B by 2014

Revenues from remote patient monitoring services that use mobile networks will rise to $1.9 billion globally by 2014, according to Juniper Research’s 2010 report, “Mobile Healthcare Opportunities: Monitoring, Applications & mHealth Strategies 2010-2014.” Juniper’s prediction is not the first to tackle the question of the mobile health industry’s opportunity in the next four years, but like the others it narrows the industry down to a specific set of services: In this case, remote patient monitoring.

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  • David Niewolny

    What is the latest from the FDA on the status of using smart mobile device as diagnostic tools and to administer treatment?  I know there are plenty of apps out there, but how many of them are actually “medical devices”?

  • http://www.policymedical.com PolicyMedical

    Hi Chris,
    We’re a policy management software vendor for hospitals and we’ve had our eyes on the mHealth market for a while now. We’re on the brinks of developing a mobile application for our system, and we know that the mHealth sector moves fast and comes out with new trends every week, so summary posts like these really help. I’m also curious as to what the latest from the FDA is.

  • Didier Thizy

    I co-authored a paper in late 2010 called “11 Disruptive Technologies That Will Change the Face of Healthcare” (http://tinyurl.com/2u9hs87). In essence, the predications revolved around the growing use of mobile phones and tablets in health institutions, electronic and personal health records, unified communications, videoconferencing, clinical decision support and cloud computing.

    It’s exciting to see how these same predictions are now being forecast by analysts whose detailed research and market sizing makes the near-term future seem even more real. 

    The one thing I’m not seeing addressed in this article is the security risk and hacking potential of wireless communications. I saw a study just recently indicating that even implantable medical devices are at a substantial risk for security breach by hackers. http://www.eastvalleytribune.com/nation_world/article_9053e654-d047-11e0-a6f1-001cc4c002e0.html   I can’t imagine this wouldn’t have an impact on the perhaps too-optimistic adoption rates that are forecasted here.

  • Howard Jonathan Miller

    Hi Didier,
    Sadly I lost my sister just recently to brain cancer.  I believe the over use of cell phones was certainly a contributing factor.Do you know of any companies or mobile devices that are addressing the possible radiation and effects of using mobile devices on the actual users?
    I would like to get involved with an organization devoting R&D to this issue.

  • dlschermd

    Daisy, the sector is not moving fast at all.  There is a lot of development technologically, but the movement that matters, raising money, getting the government regulators and payers to not just buy into the concept which they have, but to ‘put their money where their mouth is’ and get mHealth really on the go is not happening rapidly at all.  This needs to be done.  Getting the word out to grass roots consumers about the potential for mHealth as the best kept secret in medicine and wellness needs to happen.  and getting good quality clinical trials to ‘sell’ it intellectually to physicians needs to happen as well. 
    David Lee Scher, MD