Smartphone Apps for Chronically Ill

January 25, 2011 – 10:51 pm

Mobile health graph

Click to enlarge.

Most healthcare apps for smartphones tend to fall into the general health and fitness tracking categories. The chronically ill have not been on the radar of apps developers, but that is about to change, according to Berlin-based market research company research2guidance. Traditional healthcare industry players are entering the mobile health, or mHealth, apps market, and they are boosting smartphones’ healthcare IQ.

With the potential for sophisticated monitoring, compliance, time management and a host of other applications to improve healthcare delivery to chronically ill patients, mHealth technology promises to bring significant advances in the management of chronic diseases. The size of the target group is impressive: more than 2 billion patients worldwide are diagnosed with a chronic disease, according to the OECD and WHO.

Chronic disease is a major cost driver in developed countries. In the United States, the cost of treating chronic disease constitutes 96% of total Medicare expenditures, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Diabetes is ranked highest in terms of business potential for mHealth applications, according to a global survey.

The graph above illustrates market potential for mobile applications, specifically for chronic diseases, and the size of the overall market for patients with chronic diseases today.

Research2guidance has published a detailed analysis of the mHealth market, which is available for purchase.

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