Medical device and life science reps are among those that benefit most from the use of tablets. The use of tablets and mobile apps to present to and engage with physicians, as well as patients, is expected to only increase. The growing practice of using tablets to present to clinicians and patients benefits medical device reps in three important ways:
- Easily Accessible Knowledge: Tablet presentations give physicians and patients the potential to interact with digital versions of the products presented to them. When looking to purchase a medical device, complete knowledge of the inner working of the device is one of the most important factors in the purchasing decisions. Patients who need a medical device want to be assured that they know how the device works before purchasing the product. Tablet presentations provide a familiar platform for patients and physicians to increase their knowledge of a medical device.
- Reduced Time: With the use of tablet technology, medical device reps can present more products in less time. With past non-digital presentations, reps were only able to demonstrate 2-3 products at a time. With the use of tablet presentations, reps can now present between 7-8 medical devices and their features at a time. Not only have the number of products that can be presented increased, they can also be shown in a significantly less time. Tablets vastly streamlines the presentation process, reducing the time required to engage with each physician.
- Improved Internal Sales Training: Apps can deliver to sales reps the most up to date training and support material for the most sophisticated medical devices. The secure but easy anytime, anywhere access that tablets provide allows medical device reps to be well-read and up to date on all products and industry trends necessary to make a compelling and successful presentation to their clients.
Over 87% of all physicians use smartphones or tablets at the point of care. Within the next year, nearly half of all doctors are expected to introduce medical health apps into their practices. Furthermore, 96% of physicians believe that these apps will vastly improve the quality of life and care for their patients and are eager to introduce mobile health apps into their practices. An additional 72% of doctors think that the use of mobile health apps will encourage their patients to take more responsibility for their health.
In order for mobile health apps to be beneficial to physicians, doctors require that these apps provide:
- Communication Capabilities: Physicians want apps that provide secure and easy communication with patients dealing with anything from care plans to new prescriptions.
- Information Resources: When interacting with patients, doctors want apps that provide diagrams, models, and information about specific illnesses and diseases. Such apps enable patients and doctors to have clear and concise understandings of treatment options and care plans.
- Monitoring Abilities: Increasingly, physicians want apps that enable them to remotely monitor chronically ill patients. From tracking blood sugar to Body Mass Index (BMI), apps with monitoring capabilities increase a doctor’s ability to provide quality, targeted care.
As of 2017, over 77% of the American public owns smartphones and approximately 51% own tablets or computers, and 36% of US residents have both smartphones and tablets in their homes. The number of people who own smart mobile devices has nearly tripled in the last six years and will only continue to grow. With 60% of current smartphone owners having a mobile health app on their device, the use of mobile health app usage is on the rise as well.
Patients who use mobile health apps are primarily interested in apps that improve communication with their doctors. Most patients are primarily interested in three specific types of mobile health apps:
- Apps that allow them to schedule, check, and cancel appointments.
- Apps that provide access portals to their Electronic Health Records (EHRs). Patients want these EHR apps to also allow them to communicate with their doctors about lab test results and medical record updates.
- Apps that let patients request prescriptions from their doctors so they can fill these prescriptions at a pharmacy of their choice.
The primary benefit of using mobile health apps is the increased value of care at reduced costs. The on-going communication and monitoring between patients and doctors can enable the diagnosis of illnesses before emergency care and hospitalization is needed. In this way, apps can reduce the high costs associated with hospital stays by helping to prevent diseases from progressing.
The greatest concern both patients and doctors cite is that mobile health apps are may not be secure. Over half of users who have stopped using mobile health apps did so because they feared unauthorized users might compromise their personal information. With the highly sensitive data stored in EHRs and patient portals, this concern is understandable.
At Saritasa, security and privacy are of the highest priority. We rigorously follow best practices, procedures, and processes that enforce software design and development to maximize secure access to all private data. All mobile apps we design and develop are fully FDA and HIPAA compliant, and we ensure that we meet and exceed security regulations and requirements.
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