The use of mobile applications to deliver health services has gained momentum in recent years. It is estimated that by 2025, the eHealth app market will generate up to $111 billion globally.
This growing demand and effort in developing eHealth apps are attributable to the increased need to provide quality and reliable access to health services for patients at their convenience.
Today, health apps are widely used to schedule doctors’ appointments, review prescriptions, and help patients take their medication on time. Other apps are used for habit tracking, self-diagnosing, fitness, and wellness, as well as medical administration services like inventory management, billing, and doctor/nurse marketplace, among others.
There is a clear need for health apps. This post provides a simple guide to health app development.
Ideal functions of a health app
Overall, convenience should be at the core of the functionality of a health app. Some of the key areas of focus when you work with offshore software development for developing health apps are:
- Easy access to functions: The app should be simple and easy to navigate. The user should be able to get the desired output within a few clicks of a button.
- Easy communication: The app should have detailed and functional information from credible health sources. Further, it should provide a simple channel to access and communicate with health professionals.
- Access to the patient community: Access to the patient community has proved important for sharing experiences.
- Integration with wearable devices: This allows for easy tracking and accessing of the app from wearable devices like smartwatches, thus eliminating the need to open the app from your smartphone.
Integral features required in a Health care application
You should include these critical features in your health app development.
- Integrations with existing health tracking products and services
Google Fit, Samsung Health, and HealthKit already exist and have gained wide popularity and acceptance globally. Your app, therefore, should provide frameworks for integration with such platforms.
- Telemedicine options
One of the key value options users seek from health apps is real-time access to health care providers via calls, videos, or messages. These have become a necessity in health apps.
- Reminders and notification options
This is another critical element of a health app. It should provide real-time and location-based notifications and reminders for patients on their medical appointments and prescriptions intake.
- Cloud-based health solutions
Cloud-computing services can help patients access information easily. Beyond facilitating streamline communications, cloud computing can be useful for storing electronic health records and providing health data analytics.
Again, in facilitating easy access to information, chatbots can help in providing app users with detailed responses to their questions. With technologies like machine learning, it is possible to provide rich and personalized responses based on a detailed analysis of personal health data.
Health App Development Process
Develop an elaborate strategy
The first step that sets the stage for the entire mobile app development process is developing an elaborate strategy for your health app. Specify the goal – the target users and the functions the app is to perform. Best practice calls for having a particular area of focus. For instance, your app’s main function could be fitness tracking or proper record management for health professionals. All features on the app should complement its main purpose. Having the concept and strategy validated by healthcare professionals, patients, and other target users can also help guide you through the development. This will also help you gauge the relevance of your health app in the market.
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Focus on the results
For health apps, precision, accuracy, and reliability are key. For instance, if you are building an app for self-diagnosis, the information it provides should assist users in conducting accurate self-diagnosis. If it is meant for doctors, it should facilitate the optimal use of time as they practice.
The bottom line is to ensure your app meets and exceeds the expectations of its target users. That is why your goal should be elaborate from the start.
Compliance with healthcare regulations
To build on the reliability aspect, the information and functions of your application should also be compliant with the health regulations in your country, and the global standards. This implies that the information you provide therein should be verifiable and approved by the various regulatory authorities governing the health sector.
Focus on delivering a decent digital experience
With health apps, convenience is key. This spans from the design, information provided therein, and the relevance of the complementary features.
Leverage future technologies for optimal performance
Technology is progressing fast. Artificial intelligence, machine learning, and blockchain technology are becoming increasingly useful in the health sector. You, therefore, should ensure that your health app can adopt these transformative technologies now and in the future.
Hire a trusted software development company
This last stage is the execution phase, where you choose a developer capable of delivering a fully functional app considering all the stated factors. Ideally, a developer with a proven track record of successfully implementing similar projects is the most suitable. The key aspects to look for in a mobile app development company include their portfolio, experience in mobile app development, quality and efficiency, and their reviews and testimonials.
Health apps cater to a critical aspect of life – health. It is, therefore, prudent that it offers value to its users. Hopefully, this guide propels you to develop a useful and functional health app.