More than half of US hospitals use mobile health technology

Mar 2, 2016 | Hospital Finance Efficiency

As health care and technology become more intertwined, hospitals have begun applying mobile tech solutions to concerns of quality care and lower costs. A new survey from the Healthcare Information and Management Systems Society and the Personal Connected Alliance found that 52 percent of hospitals now use three or more such technologies, and 47 percent hope to expand these efforts. Respondents said these technologies allow them to take advantage of such services as telehealth and patient-generated data.

The results of the survey
The survey, which had 227 participants of IT, informatics and clinical professionals, analyzed the usage of different technologies that serve different roles in health care technology. These included applications for patient education and engagement, patient-generated health data and mobile patient portals. The survey found that 81 percent of participants' organizations use at least one type of mobile health technology, while 67 are using more than one. Out of all these, mobile-optimized patient portals are the most popular, with 57 percent of respondents using them in their hospital or health system.

The implications on cost and care
This steadily rising rate of adoption comes as no surprise considering how much these technologies can improve patient/provider relationships. Experts believe that when patients take a more active role in their own health care, re-admissions and complications will decline. Patients are also asking for a closer relationship with their health care providers. A poll by the Society of Participatory Medicine found that 88 percent of the adults who responded believe working closely with a provider will help them manage and improve their health.

The survey also allowed respondents to propose a solution, and 84 percent believe tracking health data, such as blood pressure and heart rate, to share with professionals is the best way to manage their health. The poll also found that 76 percent of respondents are interested in using a provider-recommended device to log this data. That's where these mobile technologies come into play.

Because they reduce the likelihood of error and bring more patient input into the equation, mobile and wireless devices, or "connected health tools" are often touted for their ability to deliver quality care to patients. For this reason, HIMSS explains that these tools have become increasingly important as a solution for hospitals focusing on lowering costs. HIMSS adds that this is especially true in the United States, where the health care system is shifting its focus.

Adopting tech solutions can improve quality of care and lower costs, making it easier for patients to afford health care and relieving your revenue cycle of certain financial burdens. For more revenue cycle solutions, contact Professional Medical Services today.