Revisiting wireless health by the numbers

By Brian Dolan

Brian Dolan, Editor, MobiHealthNewsRecent weeks have brought a new flurry of mobile health-related metrics from established research firms as well as from deployments of mobile health services and devices. Here's the redux:

ABI Research reported this week that mobile data services for health care will grow to $7.7 billion worldwide by 2014. These services include non-voice and non-WiFi mobile services. The figure means that healthcare will account for 10 percent of all mobile data service revenues in 2014.

Kalorama Information has a similar stat: Healthcare accounts for about 5 percent of the smartphone market today. In 2009 sales of PDAs and smartphones for use in healthcare was worth about $2.6 billion, Kalorama estimated.

In the UK an NHS trust that deployed 600 Panasonic Toughbooks said it saved about £600,000 (or $940,000 USD) annually in travel costs because staff are no longer returning to their facilities--they can check-in remotely from their devices.

“I saw A1C levels drop from average 11% to 9% in the first 3 months,” endocrinologist Dr. Jennifer Dyer found after piloting a text message diabetes management program with a few of our teenage diabetic patients.

A comprehensive study of heart disease patients using remote monitoring services found that within the telemonitored group, 102 patients died per 1,000 compared with 154 deaths per 1,000 under standard care.

SpyGlass Consulting surveyed more than 100 physicians and found that 94 percent were using smartphones to communicate, manage personal and business workflows, and access medical information. Back in 2006 only 59 percent of the physicians surveyed were using smartphones.

Parks Associates surveyed 972 patients and found that of those who use medical devices like pulse oximeters or blood glucose meters only 4 percent actually transfer the data to their mobile phone.

Parks also found that 21 percent of smartphone owners polled had downloaded a fitness app or workout-related smartphone app.

Some mobile phones carry 18 times the bacteria than a public toilet.

Also, revisit our last "wireless health by the numbers" redux here