Deloitte: Mobile PHR is the "killer app"

By Brian Dolan

Diversinet MobiSecure HealthDeloitte's most recent research note focused on the opportunity presented by mobile devices outfitted with personal health records (PHRs): "Combined with actionable decision support... "mPHR,” can analyze aggregate data to activate mobile, patient-specific output such as medication reminders, healthy habit tips and medical bill reminders." Deloitte believes that a PHR embedded in mobile devices, including tablets, is the "killer app" that "may change the game for providers, consumers and payers."

The firm backs up some of its predictions with a few stats from its Deloitte 2010 Survey of Health Care Consumers:

Some 50 percent of consumers want a personal monitoring device to alert and guide them to make improvements in their health or treat a condition. About 57 percent want to access an online PHR connected to their doctor’s office. Twice as many Gen X and Y consumers want to access and maintain their PHRs using a mobile device than do baby boomers and senior citizens.

Despite the hype around the stats and using terms like "killer app" and "change the game," Deloitte is aware of some barriers for mPHRS: A lack of widely-accepted single technical standards among both PHRs and electronic health records (EHRs); Only 10 percent of American adults currently use a PHR; Consumer privacy and security; Provider concerns over liability and data integrity of PHRs.

The catalysts for mPHR's game changing success? Greater EHR adoption, increased regulatory clarity around standards/privacy/liability, increased mobile device capacity and functionality, decreasing costs of mobile devices along with payer incentives for use, increasing consumerism of healthcare.

Deloitte's mPHR report is a fascinating read (PDF)