|I decided to turn my rant on the 2011 mHealth Summit into something productive and submit a talk to the 2012 Summit. A description of the proposed talk follows, as it appears on the application.
We’ll see what happens…
Why are doctors so apparently reluctant to embrace mHealth?
It is easy to appreciate the mHealth community’s frustration regarding this question. Clearly the physician community and the mHealth community do not understand each other very well. The purpose of this presentation is to establish a mutual understanding and better lines of communication between practicing physicians and the mHealth community.
The first part of the presentation addresses practicing physicians’ concerns about mHealth:
1. What is mHealth? Has it been clearly defined?
2. The safety and efficacy of mHealth / HIT products are not proven. Technology always has unintended consequences. In medicine such unintended consequences can increase costs and can harm patients.
3. There is no widely accepted business model that establishes the return on investment for mHealth / HIT products.
4. Government regulations and incentives may also have unintended adverse side effects.
Many of these concerns originate from the cultural differences between the physician and HIT communities. Each of these cultures sees the health care system and the role of mHealth / HIT differently. The second part of the presentation addresses the cultural differences between these two communities and how these differences impede the adoption of mHealth / HIT. Examples of cultural differences will include e-prescribing, health information exchanges and telemedicine.
The final part will outline the concessions both physicians and the HIT community need to make in order to facilitate communication, promote adoption of mHealth and improve the quality of mHealth products. This will be difficult but worthwhile for both sides.