Healthcare as an industry has undergone a great deal of change with the onset of digital technology. Increasingly it is the personalization of dedicated health monitoring tools, particularly on mobile devices, that is bringing innovation to both the healthcare industry, and to mobile devices. A recent Harris Poll has revealed that U.S. consumers are ready to take on the technology.
Smartphones have always been the Swiss Army knives of technology. Doubling up as portable cameras, music players, GPS devices, and generally people’s one-stop portals to the connected world, there seems to be no limit to the function and utility they bring to people’s lives.
A Harris Poll of 2,537 U.S. adults revealed that large majorities of consumers are ready to try out mobile healthcare technology when it becomes available. The primary features respondents were “very interested” in included; monitoring or checking their blood pressure (with 48 percent saying they were very interested in this feature), and monitoring their heart and heartbeat for irregularities (47 percent). An additional 23 percent and 22 percent, respectively, said that they were “somewhat interested” in these features.
Interestingly, the sentiment was shared not just among millennials, but through a whole cross section of society.
Mobile Healthcare Key Facts And Statistics
Below is an overview of key stats and findings from the report. It shows that large numbers of U.S. consumers are very interested in mobile healthcare services and attachments.
- Interest is particularly strong for blood testing services (with 41 percent extremely interested and 21 percent somewhat interested).
- Using mobile attachments to photograph a user’s eye, cornea, or retina to diagnose eye problems had a strong response (with 40 percent very interested, and 23 percent somewhat interested).
- Checking blood sugar or glucose levels received promising responses (with 39 percent interested, and 22 percent somewhat interested).
- Measuring lung function was a feature that 38 percent of respondents were very interest in, and 23 percent were somewhat interested in.
- Diet tracking had 36 percent of respondents very interested, and 24 percent somewhat interested.
Mobile Healthcare Demographics
The key demographics show that there is significant interest for mobile healthcare from all sectors and segments of society:
- Tracking physical activity generated strong interest from 57 percent of Millennials, 45 percents of Gen Xers, 35 percent of Baby Boomers, and 25 of Matures.
- Tracking diet generated strong interest from 50 percent of Millennials, 36 percent of Gen Xers, 28 percent of Baby Boomers, and 21 percent of Matures.
- Diagnosing eye problems generated strong interest from 49 percent of Millennials, 38 percent of Gen Xers, 34 percent of Baby Boomers, and 36 percent of Matures.
- Measuring lung function generated strong interest from 46 percent of Millennials, 35 percent of Gen Xers, 34 percent of Baby Boomers, and 34 percent of Matures.
- Checking blood pressure generated strong interest from 51 percent of men vs. 45 percent of women.
- Conducting general blood testing generated strong interest from 45 percent of men vs. 38 percent of women.
- Checking blood sugar or blood glucose levels generated strong interest from 43 percent of men vs. 35 percent of women.
- Men are also more likely than women to show a strong interest in measuring lung function at 41 percent of men vs. 35 percent of women.
Driving Demand For Mobile Healthcare
These are some positive statistics, but it seems the healthcare industry isn’t moving fast enough to meet consumer demand in mobile health services. A Deloitte report on “How mobile technology is transforming health care” explained how change is being driven by consumer demand:
“Consumers are driving much of the demand for mHealth technologies and applications. Mobile apps are enhancing overall consumer engagement in health care by increasing the flow of information; lowering costs through better decision-making, fewer in-person [healthcare] visits, and greater adherence to treatment plans; and improving satisfaction with the service experience.”
For consumers, mobile healthcare has the potential to make lives easier, and offer faster access to health care and high-quality, personalized care. The possibilities are virtually limitless: mobile can be a means of communication; a way to sync real-time information and messages; a remote monitor, or smart devices, that brings care into the comfort of people’s own homes offering a means to check up on patients remotely, and a warning system if anything goes wrong. It can also be a means for healthcare staff and patients to interact via video conference allowing them to give advice, support, or simply to remind them to take their medicine.
The mobile opportunities available to the healthcare industry are a leading example of how technology and innovation can disrupt, and reform an industry. It provides businesses to develop more personalized relationships with consumers, and enhance their experiences of a brand’s product or services.
What’s unique to healthcare is that more than any other industry, consumers are ready to embrace change and innovation that the industry provides, especially if it means improving their own wellbeing or that of their loved ones. After all, what’s more valuable to consumers, and indeed any of us, than our health?
Do you work in the healthcare industry? What change do you think mobile and technology will bring to the everyday lives of consumers.