Why your doctor fears your data

The IMS Institute for Healthcare Informatics recently published a paper on medical apps. Unsurprisingly, they found that most are pretty lame, few have more than a couple of hundred downloads, and even fewer do much to solve real problems. What I found most interesting were the doctors' concerns:

  1. Is there evidence that proves the clinical value of this app?
  2. Does this app require regulatory approval? If so, has it received it?
  3. Who should pay for this app? Will the doctor get paid for interpreting the data?
  4. What are the legal liabilities a doctor faces when recommending this app?
  5. How safe is the patient's personal health information?
  6. Can the data be integrated into the doctor's health IT system?

The study goes on to say that doctors have a hard time finding good apps from the nearly 40,000 health and medical apps in the iTunes app store, not to mention those available for Android. What they're most interested in are apps that will "keep patients engaged in their own healthcare" and help monitor a patient outside the clinical environment. Adherence to medication is another functionality that scores well with clinicians. The study goes on to suggest that not enough apps are built with the 65+ population, nor for their caregivers.

Over the next few weeks, I'll discuss how Symple addresses the 6 concerns listed above. We don't have all the answers quite yet, but I'm glad to have a great list of questions to tackle!

natasha gajewski