I would like to propose that an OSEHRA mHealth Working Group be established as soon as possible. It may already be in the works, for all I know.
There are already well over 4 billion mobile devices in use around the world and the numbers are only growing. In the coming decade, mobile health (mHealth) will dramatically change the daily clinical practices of many health care providers and the lives of their patients. The mHealth app market currently is worth about $718 million and is expected to double to $1.3 billion by the end of 2012, according to Research2Guidance. Innovative mHealth projects utilizing mobile phones and other wireless and hand held devices are powering the collection and use of health information to diagnose, treat, and educate people in even the most remote corners of the world. This also holds true for the providers, patients and their family members treated by the VA, DoD, IHS, and the rest of the VistA & OSEHRA community.
There are already sources of mHealth Apps out there for almost any type of device you can think of, including mHealth apps being distributed by NIH, NLM, and USA.Gov But I could only find a small handfull of mHealth apps specific to VA and DoD.
- Android Health Apps
- AOL Open Mobile Platform
- Blackberry Health Apps
- Google Play Health Apps
- iTriage Health App
- Medic Mobile
- Medscape App
- My HealtheVet "Blue Button"
- NIH Mobile Health Apps
- NLM Mobile Health Apps
- Nursing iPhone Apps
- Sana Mobile
- SmartPhone Medical Apps
- T2 Mobile Mental Health Apps
- USA.Gov Mobile Health Apps
- Verizon Health Apps
- WebMD Mobile
- Windows Mobile Health Apps
There are a growing number of mHealth software development tools now available. The community needs to investigate these and make some recommendations on which ones may be the best for the community. For example, check out -
Appcelerator - A free & open source app development platform.
Open Mobile Health Exchange - An open-source collaborative development project for microsyntax used in text messaging (mobile SMS), Twitter®, etc.
M/Gateway iWD - Mobile app development tool for open source VistA or health IT systems using the 'M' programming platform.
PhoneGap - An open source mobile app development tool
I believe in his presentation at the OSEHRA Summit, Col. (Ret.) Hon Pak mentioned that Diversinet is planning on making a lite 'open source' version of their mHealth development platform available shortly. It is just one of the tools that needs to be looked at. Given that it's DIACAP certified by DoD as a secure mHealth platform, it might be worth looking at.
In addition to establishing the mHealth Working Group, OSEHRA should be planning to establish an mHealth App Store by early next year to house the many open source mHealth development tools and apps that will emerge fairly rapidly.