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16 Mar

Why apps created for health are not succeeding

We already have 175K m-health apps available to download from the app stores but most of the users have not yet learned to systematically use them to manage and improve their health aspects.

mobile app health

(Source)

This of course discourages mobile app developers who put all their hard-work, thorough researches and hundreds of hours of manpower in bringing these m-health apps.

Orcha, the organization for the review of care and health applications, put thorough, impartial reviews of health and care related applications. These reviews serve as a base for both healthcare professionals and public who need apps that they can trust on. Reviewing process covers clinic validity and design of the app along with their testing, safety & security and users feedback.

As experts have discovered, the world health app market is still very immature. Still, these apps nearly have 4 million downloads which simply means that people want these apps to be solutions for their problem and they want to manage several health conditions.

On the other hand, there are no clinical circumstances to evaluate the trustworthiness of these health apps which keep increasing day and night. Many clinicians do not even feel confident or empowered to recommend patients with particular apps. Research shows that majority of apps are removed the same day they are downloaded. It suggests that users do not find these apps useful.

Search for a diabetes related app and you will feel surprised by seeing more than 3000 app-results. Some of them may indeed be amazing but most of them are downright dangerous. So it will really be very difficult to find good apps even after their good ratings and reviews. After all it’s the matter health.

At the developers’ end, if the app is uninstalled for not being useful, they first of all miss the opportunity to help somebody and then the benefits that the app is made to achieve.

Here patients downloading apps need to be aware of risks they can be exposed to because of relying on any health app. These apps may provide inaccurate information and share data with third parties.

Businesses investing in health apps and hoping to generate revenue through their ventures need to understand the market. It’s already quite expensive to build an app and it’s far more difficult for developers to differentiate their apps from 172,000 other apps out there on stores. Most health apps reaching the market place hardly get even a respectful number of downloads and that’s why they never achieve commercialization. It simply means there is no scope that developers behind such apps will ever update and maintain them. Users should not rely on these types of applications particularly for health-matters.

The solution to this issue is that only those m-health ideas should be considered worth converting into reality which can really be useful for users. To make m-health apps a more serious thing, there may be a governmental body providing certifications to the apps living up to the common health standards.  Apps having such certifications can easily be relied by both patients and clinicians.