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The Four Dimensions of Effective mHealth: People, Places, Payment and Purpose

The promise of mobile health (mHealth), the use of mobile devices to support the practice of medicine and public health, is profound but, as yet, unrealized. mHealth strategies, however, are not “one-size-fits-all.” By leveraging the power and reach of mobile communications, mHealth makes it possible to provide a more versatile and personalized approach to health care. However, in order for mHealth to reach its full potential, four critical dimensions must align: people, places, payment and purpose.

People: Demographics
A nuanced understanding of demographics such as age, gender and income can point to technology preferences and help drive customization and targeting of users’ mHealth experiences.

Places: Local Infrastructure
The convergence of infrastructure needs (reliable local networks – cellular, broadband and wireless, download speeds and bandwidth capacity) and rapid technological development may be a tipping point for mHealth adoption.

Payment: Reimbursement and Regulatory
Value-based reforms are prompting health care organizations to 1) find more efficient ways to improve care while increasing quality; 2) expand care delivery outside the hospital and physician office; 3) facilitate patient-provider connectivity “anytime and anywhere”; and 4) increase patient engagement. Addressing privacy and security concerns, as well as reimbursement approaches and regulatory consistency across jurisdictions, should remove several existing barriers to adoption.

Purpose: Disease Dynamics
Fitness, wellness, care provision, disease management and complex case management can be supported by mHealth functionality, but the approach has to fit the condition.

Download the report to explore the opportunities and challenges across these four dimensions.

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