Engaged Technology: Focus your strategy

Q. How mHealth technology can engage patients?
 - 
Thursday, January 25, 2018

A. With one-fifth of the U.S. population trending to be 65 or older by the year 2030, mobile health (mHealth) will continue to drive innovation, automation and greater integration for home medical equipment providers. As you consider strategies to address the large-scale economic and health needs of this growing population you will need to include the ‘Silver Tsunami’s’ mobile aspects in your plans. In particular, determine how the increasing adoption of mHealth technology by older adults will increasingly foster coordinated and connected care.

Mobile-centric connectivity across all care providers, home health agencies, family, senior living, and community support organizations can deliver greater peace of mind not only to the patient but their entire caregiving community. The comfort that everyone in their care journey is always on the same page, communicating transparently, and accessing the data they need in a timely manner enables the ability to provide the best and earliest care possible. Thus, mHealth technology strategies should focus on:

-        Information that can be  easily and securely shared  from any device and any location

-        Participant interdependence and engagement

-        Technologies’ ease of  use, adoptability and integration

-        Results for greater caregiver efficiencies   

Leveraging mobile technology to connect elder patients to their ever changing caregivers, and to one another, allows the care ecosystem to flex, adapt, and move with them from a hospital visit, to rehab scenarios, back to home (where ever they call home). Additionally, the data, people and devices related to care activities can be synchronized to stay current and always relevant. Technology can provide all with access, thus leveraging ongoing education, support and care oversight for tasks, activities and real-time, relevant health data. 

Reducing isolation and increasing social-linkage is another primary benefit of mHealth technologies. Key to the patient’s core needs is the ability for technology to assist them in routines, communication, health and the daily control of their lives. Support of the patient and their independence can be effectively and efficiently supported by mobile technology.

Val Ornoy is CEO of LifeAssist Technologies. Reach him at val@lat.care.