Guest post by Sonia Rupcic, HITLAB research manager

The National Institute of Health held its third annual mHealth Summit recently in Washington DC, and HITLAB’s Meg Griffin, Stan Kachnowski and I attended to present data and to look for the next transformational healthcare technology that can be tested in the field and taught to future public health leaders. On the presentation side, we shared our findings from a study of consumer attitudes toward mobile phone usage when trying to manage pharmacy medications. The event – packed with the most important innovators and researchers in the field of mobile healthcare – was fertile ground for the latter goal as well as. Keynote speakers included U.S. Secretary of Health Kathleen Sebelius, and Dr. Hamadoun Toure of the International Telecommunication Union.

More than 700 cutting edge businesses, universities and NGOs made it to the nation’s capital to network and learn about this emerging field. Speakers lectured on a variety of topics, from how policy can promote interoperability of medical devices to the uses of cell phones for diagnostics. Our team sat in on panels discussing how mobile health technologies can improve disease management for patients with chronic conditions, such as diabetes, cancer and heart disease. This arena is highly promising. Mobile healthcare applications already do so many different things, including engage patients in dynamic and personalized educational content while linking them to networks of people with similar health issues. Plus, because such interventions are completely digitized, much of the usage data are collected continuously.

We are already looking forward to the 2012 mHealth Summit. Feel free to contact us with any questions or copies of our research at contact@hitlab.org

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