The future of healthcare apps

IE had a great time last week exhibiting at the Healthcare Efficiency Through Technology expo (HETT) in London. Our stand - in the Apps and Innovation Zone - was jam packed with visitors interested in discussing the latest developments in health sector apps. We noticed a few common themes under discussion amongst delegates. Below, I’ve highlighted a few key growing areas of interest.

Mental Health apps

Quite of few of our visitors highlighted the need for digital solutions to tackle increasing mental health issues. They discussed the need for an app created specifically for mental health patients that enables health workers to remain in regular contact.  

An app enabling users to record their emotions and keep track of external stimulants affecting them would allow users to identify key trends, helping them to minimise external triggers. Their doctor can track their logged emotions remotely via a web dashboard, and reach out to the patient if they spot a worrying trend. Like our app, HealthTouch, this can provide a solution to ineffective patient management by dealing with problems before they escalate and reducing the amount of unnecessary face-to-face appointments.

Remote servicing apps

Other visitors were interested in apps that benefit service users who live in more remote parts of the UK. Remote servicing apps can provide a lifeline to people with limited access to support. Apps like this can also benefit people who are constantly on the move, such as the homeless. Through our work with CLIC Sargent, we've seen the benefit of a community app that connects people who suffer from similar conditions. This can allow users from across the UK to connect and provide mutual support.

Post-operative and rehabilitation apps

Many of our visitors discussed ideas surrounding an app that provides assistance and support to users following an operation or serious health problem. An app that can help users remain in communication with health professionals, manage appointments/medication and support the recuperation process, would be useful.

So, what next?

Following the event, it became apparent that delegates are experiencing similar problems, that might be helped with a digital solution. To make effective use of time and money, it’s important that investment in innovation is shared amongst organisations facing similar issues.

IE are in the midst of helping Public Health England create a ‘kite mark’ for NHS apps, where only the highest quality apps will receive a stamp of approval, making it easier for organisations to share innovation.

Got an idea for an app, or just a problem you’d like help to solve? One of our expert digital consultants will be glad to help.