Former health secretary Andrew Lansley had a vision – in the future, GPs could direct patients to apps to help monitor and manage their health. He believed innovation and technology would “revolutionise” the NHS, and called for the service to review how it could use apps, including how GPs could offer them for free. But this vision has somewhat stalled.
Although the notion of prescribing health apps seems a good one, so far, at least in practice, it’s rare – despite the potential for more patients to manage their medical condition, helping them become more willing adherents to treatment and care, and ultimately reducing the strain on healthcare systems.
Without doubt it’s an area of intense interest. And with nearly 100,000 different health apps available, according to Research2Guidance, you’d be forgiven for thinking it was a done deal. Yet an October 2013 study by IMS Health, which looked at 43,000 health and wellness apps in the iTunes store, found the majority did little more than provide information.
So are doctors interested in prescribing apps and is there a place for apps as a treatment option? You can find out by reading the full article by Alexandra Wyke, CEO of PatientView (@PatientView), which featured in the November issue of PharmaTimes Magazine. Just click here.