The most common digital health applications for mHealth include:
- Education and awareness
- Diagnostic and treatment support
- Disease and epidemic outbreak tracking
- Healthcare supply chain management
- Remote data collection
- Remote monitoring
- Healthcare worker telecommunication and training
- Chronic disease management
Numerous mHealth initiatives across the world have demonstrated the efficacy of using mobile devices to deliver such health solutions cost-effectively:
- Patients make and receive phone calls or text/voice messages related to health education, treatment adherence, contacting health workers, or organizing transport to health services.
- Healthcare workers are provided with needed resources to access the most up-to-date clinical guidelines, collaborate with colleagues, analyze data, receive diagnostic support, and interact with clients.
- Positive outcomes are achieved through SMS alerts—which have a proven ability to influence behavior in a manner superior to radio and television campaigns.
- Remote data collection is achieved—which reduces the health information gap that exists in many developing countries and enables officials to evaluate the effectiveness of public health initiatives, allocate resources appropriately, and optimize policies and programs.
- Medication adherence and chronic care management are supported—as evidenced by Smart Alert Systems that notify physicians via a cloud-based platform if a patient is not taking medications as prescribed and requires intervention.
- Access to quality care is optimized—helping to address the shortage of skilled healthcare workers, and lessening the burden on those trying to bridge the gap.