Over the past year or so, there has been quite a buzz building around mHealth. Sometimes a technology comes along that really meets the needs of an industry, and when that happens, we have to ask ourselves: “How can we use this?”
In the case of mHealth, we are instantly seeing ways we can leverage mobile devices to improve healthcare. I have read several articles on how mobile technologies are providing better access to personalized healthcare for patience, better performance support tools for medical professionals, and of course, access to training via a mobile device (or mLearning).
At Float, we are very excited about all of the above. As a matter of fact, we have spent a great deal of time over that past few months researching and talking to the professionals in the healthcare industry, making sure we have a full understanding of this exciting new frontier. Based on all this, we have compiled several environmental scans and whitepapers to share back with the industry. We unveiled these at the mHealthSummit in Washington, D.C., held December 5-7, 2011. We’ve started to see a groundswell around this content already. Sara Jackson of Fierce Mobile Healthcare wrote an article based on one of our environmental scans, The Future of Mobile Learning in Medicine and Healthcare.
We attended that summit. This three-day event for the healthcare industry hosted more than 300 exhibitors and attracted more than 3,500 leaders from nearly 50 countries. Conference sessions explored ways mobile technology will transform the healthcare delivery, research, business and policy in the next century throughout the world.
Upon reading the Twitter stream and blog posts popping up after the event, it’s clear that there are visionaries in this industry, and things are changing rapidly.
Apple’s Steve Jobs believed in the opportunities that mobile devices offered to the healthcare industry, and advocated – as well as detected – resources in Apple to support mHealth. One example would be the announcement that the iPad is HIPAA-compliant when using WPA2 Enterprise security. This would allow healthcare providers to securely talk to patients or other clinicians via technologies such as FaceTime video chat. Apple also has a special section in the iTunes store for the healthcare sector.
Here is a short highlight video on the summit – mHealth Highlights.
Last year Bill Gates kicked of the summit as a keynote speaker. Here is a clip of some highlights:
Float hosted an exhibit and engaged in conversations sharing our research and experience in mobile learning. It was clear that mLearning will be a big part of mHeath and companies are ready to leverage the advantages of mobile for learning and development, as well as patient education.
Over the coming weeks, we will be sharing regular articles, research and video interviews with healthcare professionals via our blog. Please check back with us and follow up via Twitter @floatlearning or Google+ at Float Mobile Learning.