How to build a medical app?
A medical app on your phone is no longer a rare phenomenon. We’ll be seeing them more and more often, as healthcare mobile apps solve a myriad of problems that have previously been the daily routine of many patients. Why should you consider creating medical apps and what value can they have for customers and business owners?
The SARS-CoV-2 coronavirus pandemic has shown us in a very powerful way the value of medical apps. Those who had already released such apps saw significant increases in interest. Consumers, on the other hand – patients – appreciated the presence of such mobile apps and were eager to use them. Health systems in many countries have had to quickly implement solutions that allow remote communication between patients and doctors to protect against the spread of the virus.
The need proved to be the most important reason for the rapid development of many healthcare mobile applications. This situation shows clearly – medical apps are a very important direction in the development of many businesses around the world: especially in emerging markets. This is where patients need solutions that make it easier for them to use healthcare and get benefits related to necessary procedures, for example. But not only that – primary care is also important and can be successfully delivered remotely in many cases. It is worth noting Poland, where for a little over a year already, you can use electronic prescriptions: these have been very well received by the citizens and prove to be much more convenient than the traditional, paper counterparts.
Medical app – reasons to develop
We already mentioned why patients need modern solutions in the form of medical apps. However, it is worth addressing why business owners should consider creating their own projects. It turns out that there are plenty of reasons behind entering this market. Of course, one of the most important is that medical apps are currently a “hot topic” in the new technology circle and will probably remain so for years to come. Additionally, the SARS-CoV-2 coronavirus pandemic isn’t over yet and there are still plenty of problems that can be solved with modern healthcare apps.
- The medical app allows you to attract new customers – the kind of customers who love technological innovations and adapt quickly to changing tools.
- Healthcare mobile apps allow you to build a closer relationship with your customers by being able to proactively respond to their needs. Additionally, enabling healthcare services online is something that is now considered to be of great value.
- Healthcare personnel has less work – they can focus on other tasks by automating certain processes. New technologies allow reclaiming resources that are spent on repetitive, tedious tasks.
- A medical app is a great way to get data about your customers in order to offer them even better, tailored products and services.
- Consumers who use healthcare mobile apps tend to be more loyal to the brand/product/service by being able to use a convenient, trustworthy tool.
- Better corporate image – with the help of medical apps, you can easily let the world know that a particular brand cares about staying up to date with current trends.
- Healthcare mobile apps save a lot of people who find it difficult to use traditional forms of healthcare. People with disabilities, limited mobility can easily access a doctor or appropriate specialist.
As you can see, there are plenty of reasons behind considering healthcare mobile apps development. In addition to the business reasons, there are plenty that relates to patients – especially those who have difficulty getting care the traditional way. It makes sense to help them get healthcare on an equal footing with other people.
Types of medical apps – what platforms can you find on the market?
Healthcare applications have a variety of uses – but some of their functions are very similar. When enough of them appeared, specific types of healthcare platforms could be specified in mobile apps. The simplest division distinguishes apps for healthcare providers (for example, platforms that allow for storing patient data, analyzing test results). The second type is apps aimed at patients themselves (for example, platforms for checking results online, instant messaging to access the doctor remotely). However, there are many more types of such applications:
- Diagnostic apps: the patient can enter symptoms into the program and receive information on whether they need extended medical care. Of course, such a suggestion is not a substitute for professional medical advice.
- Reminder apps: allow you to schedule the patient’s medication: the patient will not miss the next dose of medication.
- Social medical apps: these apps give the user access to discussion forums, support groups, and other places where they can exchange insights or opinions about treatment, doctors, medications.
- Patient diaries: for certain diseases, it is important to properly record any measurements of devices such as glucometers, blood pressure monitors. A diary allows such information to be stored and shared with the treating physician.
- Mental health apps: among other things, programs that teach meditation, relaxation techniques
- Telemedicine: all programs that facilitate contact between the patient and the doctor through remote communication means
- Applications used for making medical appointments
- Applications working with IoT devices such as smart insulin pumps or medical smart bands
- Applications for managing patient data, resources in the clinic, programs that support the diagnosis of specific diseases
… and much more. Only the imagination of the developer and the needs of patients will determine how many types of medical support applications will appear on the market. Even 10 years ago, no one would have dreamed that there would be a program that would be able to suggest a possible diagnosis to a patient – but these types of programs are already appearing and are being used by both patients and doctors who want to verify whether there may be other causes for their patients’ symptoms. So it looks like doctors now have plenty of tools to better diagnose patients. But they aren’t the only ones who can benefit from modern solutions – entire clinics alike can streamline their operations with platforms that allow them to better manage their resources. And finally, patients – the biggest beneficiaries of the changes taking place in the medical services market, can take advantage of a huge number of medical apps, which significantly increase their comfort and allow for much better access to medical services.
Healthcare mobile apps development – what features are worth keeping in mind?
There are some features without which a medical app cannot exist. It is worth considering at least some of the most important features that we suggest in our material so that your new app aimed at the medical market is even more patient-friendly. It is worth paying attention not only to make your mobile app convenient to use but also to be as functional as possible.
- Convenient login: logging into the app should be done in a convenient way – preferably using social media platforms, Google account, Apple account, Microsoft account, etc.
- Integration with wearables: to enrich patient data, it would be a good idea to collect information from devices such as smart bands, smartwatches, etc.
- Payment: for private medical services, pre-payment for an appointment or procedure should be included in the app
- Making medical appointments: the patient should have access to the calendar of individual specialists in the clinic and the ability to book an appointment
- Patient diary: the patient can enter there his/her observations about the treatment or any other information
- Reminders: the patient can enter the medicines he/she takes on a regular basis into the application – the application will then remind the patient about the next dose
- Geolocation: thanks to this application patient will be able to find the nearest medical facility – even if it is far from home
- Reading test results: patients can get information about their test results without having to go to the clinic
- Remote medical advice: you can arrange an online video chat with your doctor to discuss your condition
These are just some of the features that can be implemented in an application that can successfully gain success in the medical market. As we mentioned in the previous part of our article – the features that can be added to such an app are really plenty and it mainly depends on the goals of the particular program and the needs of the patients what features will be used. Our list is only inspiration.
Medical app development process – step by step
How to create a medical app that will be successful on the medical market? This is a difficult question – but we know how to carry out the process of creating such a solution in the best way. It’s worth starting with the problem of patients, doctors, clinics, and businesses operating on the medical market we want to solve. Only then should you move on to the next steps of creating a medical app.
#1 Research the app’s audience – find out who your audience is and how they behave. Find out what they expect and where you can find them.
#2 Create an app prototype / wireframe – create a plan that will include the proposed look of the app, a rough outline of how it will work, and anything else that comes to mind. It’s a good idea to have a plan from the very beginning and work towards it.
#3 Create a first version (the so-called minimum viable product) – creating an MVP will allow you to check if your assumptions are correct. Use what you’ve learned from researching your audience and check if previously prototyped solutions work well. You must remember that the MVP must be a functional design.
#4 Test the MVP – releasing a MVP will allow you to gather feedback on your product. These you can then use to improve it, fix bugs, and add features that your audience wants. You need to listen carefully to the people who will be using your app.
#5 Distribution and monetization – if everything has gone well, you can start reaching a much wider audience with your app. This is also the moment when you can start monetizing your project. Of course, this is a very abbreviated form of project phases – each case is different and may require a slightly different approach.
As you can see – the medical apps market is an extremely interesting and noteworthy sector, which is not only full of business opportunities but also allows you to significantly contribute to improving the lives of many people. We have shown you how to create such a platform, what are the types, and what can be achieved with them.
Have an idea for a new medical app? Contact us! We will show you how you can create it together with our team.