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Community Health Centers: Ripe for Mobile Healthcare Innovation

Published on July 7th, 2014 by in Uncategorized

Community Health Centers are becoming more prevalent across America, as innovative healthcare practices are pursued. These centers are usually accessible to the uninsured, or those who would not otherwise have access to medical care. The centers focus on keeping their patients healthy, as opposed to simply treating illnesses. As a result, these centers often have different needs than a large hospital system. They can be dealing with patients who are not used to health systems, not used to habitual treatment or health maintenance. These patients require innovative treatments and management approaches. Often, they require monitoring technology that is expensive, both for the patient and for the center to maintain.

Mobile healthcare can provide answers for the issues that Community Health Centers face. Further development and research of mobile health strategies is increasingly important as the national focus is centered on healthcare solutions. There are currently mobile healthcare apps that provide monitoring capabilities to any person with access to a smartphone. These monitoring apps will surface as a better approach than previous – as opposed to leaving notes around the house to remind oneself to check things, or receiving constant calls or emails from a doctor’s office, apps can remind a patient to check, respond to doctors, or even go to appointments. Apps can retain all information in one location, and then send that information to another secure server for a doctor or nurse to evaluate. Apps have an unprecedented power of connectivity and rapid response, making emergency situations more avoidable or even manageable.

The next step in mobile healthcare should be to innovate in the realm of diagnostic procedures. If large expensive machines such as X-Rays could be developed to work as smartphone attachments, costs would go down, and Community Health Centers would be able to provide low-cost or free diagnostics much more easily. It seems highly possible, in our sci-fi age, that the technology necessary for mobile diagnostics could be developed. This technology would certainly revolutionize the healthcare world and would be a neutral key to the provision of more affordable healthcare. Mobile healthcare is a realm ripe for innovation, and it would behoove up and coming developers and doctors to work together to generate revolutionary mobile healthcare technology.

Community Health Centers should certainly focus on mobile healthcare as the future of their clinics. Through mobile healthcare, they can provide a high level of personalized care to their patients at a very low cost: many apps are free, and few exceed a one time cost of ten dollars.  Compare this to the hundreds of dollars of medical bills paid because repeat emergency room trips or re-admittance were required, due to lackadaisical monitoring by the patient. Community Health Centers have the unique ability to equip their patients fully and personally with the tools needed to correctly maintain their healthy state; they can do this through the innovations of mobile healthcare.

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