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Is Mobile Health the Next Killer App?

No topic is generating more buzz and excitement than mobile health: the application of wireless technologies to the delivery of healthcare. Mobile health – also referred to as mHealth, wireless health and telehealth – encompasses a broad range of applications that span the entire healthcare ecosystem. It can be anything from a physician accessing a patient EMR on her iPad to a patient tracking his diabetes via a Blackberry app to a hospital sending medication reminder alerts to transplant patients.
While mobile’s potential may be enormous, there are many obstacles that have derailed other “breakthrough” healthcare technologies in the past. Our moderator extraordinarie Peter Frishauf engaged our panelists in a candid discussion about the potential – and potential pitfalls – of mobile health.

– Corey Ackerman, President of Happtique, the first mobile application store for healthcare. Happtique offers healthcare enterprises-like hospitals and physician practices-the ability to create individually branded, secure substores for employee and patient mobile technology use. Happtique is a subsidiary of GNYHA Ventures, Inc., the business arm of the Greater New York Hospital Association.

– Matthew Browning, Founder and CEO of Your Nurse Is On, a novel platform that employs bi-directional text, phone and email communications to help hospitals and agencies put “the right healthcare providers, in the right places, right now.” The company was a Series A finalist in the prestigious DC to VC Health Tech Start-up Showcase.

– John de Souza, President & CEO of MedHelp, a pioneer in building online health communities to connect people with leading medical experts and others who have similar experiences. MedHelp has partnered with GE to create a number of consumer mobile apps to track conditions such as Pregnancy, Mood, Sleep, Diet and Fitness with almost 1.0 million downloads in less than a year.

– Dr. Katie Malbon of Mount Sinai Adolescent Health Center (MSAHC), who created Text in the City, a text messaging service for teens attending the center. It allows them to ask confidential questions and sign up for birth control reminders as well as receive weekly ‘healthbytes’ of useful and interesting health-based advice, via text.

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