Study: Mobile Health Can Improve Disease Management Adherence

March 2, 2015 in News

Mobile health technologies can improve adherence to chronic disease management, but mixed evidence of the tools’ effectiveness necessitates further research, according to a study published in the Journal of Medical Internet Research, Health Data Management reports (Slabodkin, Health Data Management, 3/2).

Details of Study

Researchers reviewed 107 studies on the role of mobile health in the management of cardiovascular disease, chronic lung disease and diabetes.

Mobile health adherence tools were separated into four categories:

  • Phone plus software or application;
  • Phone plus specific accessory;
  • Phone plus wireless or Bluetooth-connected device; and
  • SMS.

Findings

Overall, researchers found that both providers and patients generally accepted mobile health tools for chronic disease management adherence.

The authors wrote, “There is a clear recognition that [mobile health] tools have the potential to impact patients who are less inclined to engage traditional health services” (Mottl, FierceMobileHealthcare, 2/26).

However, according to the study, patients and providers have reported several barriers and negative elements related to the use of such tools, such as:

  • Difficulty understanding and using the technology; and
  • Concerns among providers about the amount of time and effort required to review data and respond to patients.

The study recommended that future research should focus on improving the ways in which mobile health tools can overcome such barriers (Health Data Management, 3/2).

Meanwhile, the authors wrote that mobile health adherence still “offers a way to address barriers to care and to reduce health disparities” (FierceMobileHealthcare, 2/26).

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