China market can help push down mHealth cost

Jeanine Vos/GSMA
15 Mar 2013

Across China, we are seeing growing demands on the healthcare industry as people are becoming more concerned about public health issues. Mobile technology is well placed to meet this demand, as it is rapidly evolving and offering new, more efficient ways to provide better access to quality healthcare at lower cost.

With mobile health or mHealth standard mobile phones and tablets, as well as other SIM-enabled medical devices, can now be used to track patient and community data, as well as deliver health services and information.

Collaboration between the telecom and health industries is crucial to the success of mHealth as there is still a lot of work to be done to educate patients, healthcare providers and governments about its benefits.

GSMA did a research among 2,000 end users (healthcare practitioners, patients and consumers) and found that they believe mHealth solutions can help to address many challenges resulting from chronic disease.

End users feel that mHealth will help improve the quality of care that healthcare practitioners can provide to patients. They also believe that mHealth allows patients to take more control of their daily care and manage their own health more efficiently. Moreover, they broadly feel that mobile technologies will greatly improve cost efficiencies across health care systems.

The GSMA research found that, globally, workload pressures are considerable for 40% of health care providers (HCPs), who said they are currently overworked and lack the time needed to effectively care for patients. This rises to more than 50% for Chinese HCPs.

Almost half the HCPs surveyed said they would use mHealth solutions if they were shown to reduce the time required to manage patients’ conditions. By increasing efficiency of care (increasing health information, increasing patients’ independence in managing their condition, improving treatment compliance and lifestyle, improving quality of care, reducing the need for out-patient consultations), mHealth solutions reduce workload and time/resource pressures that are widespread in the clinical setting.

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