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Behind the mHealth, Telehealth Boom

Gienna Shaw, for HealthLeaders Media, August 30, 2011

The market for technologies that bring healthcare to patients instead of the other way around—mobile healthcare and telehealth—has been growing steadily. And many predict it will take an even bigger jump in the next few years.

That growth will be driven by a number of factors, including government initiatives and a trend toward collaboration between healthcare organizations and vendors.

The global mobile healthcare application market was $1.7 billion last year and it’s expected to reach $4.1 billion by 2014. And the global telemedicine market is expected to reach $19.5 billion by 2014, according to two separate reports released by Infiniti Research, a global market research firm based in London.

Some of the factors leading to the growth in these markets, according to Infiniti’s research arm, Technavio are:

A clear need

You know what they say about necessity being the mother of invention—there is a real need in developing countries and in rural areas here in the U.S. for better access to healthcare, and both mobile health and telehealth offer that access.

Some argue that there’s not much evidence that remote healthcare is significantly better than in-person care. But others contend that it is just as good if not better and that, in fact, remote health has an edge for its ability to ease physician and specialist shortages and save money. (Whether payers buy that argument is another story.

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1 comments on "Behind the mHealth, Telehealth Boom"


J. Kuriyan (8/30/2011 at 1:27 PM)
What really holds back Tele-health are the arcane rules of licensure set up by State Medical Societies to "protect" their members patients from being "poached" by out of state health practitioners. If national licenses (like Board Certifications) are issued, in addition to or instead of state licenses then Tele-health will grow and thrive, especially in treatment of chronic patients. Many chronic patients really need a few minutes of consults every month - once they are in a good "maintenance" protocol. That will reduce the workload of PCPs - and allow them to see more patients who need personal attention. Off-loading the huge number of chronic patients can sound threatening to a PCP butby setting up a simple PC based system they can also participate in the boom.