With the increase in mobile technology, there is more potential for patients to utilize preventative care tools. If they are easy to use and easy to access, patients are more likely to interact and use them to strengthen their own health outcomes. This is an area that AMedNews looked into recently.
Currently, there is a slight separation between consumer tools and physicians tools in terms of mobile technology. Apps exist for patients to try and monitor their own health, but they don't integrate with their health records. Physicians have access to alert tools, but they too give patients generalized advice. However, if tools could use personalized information, giving advice specific to patients' cases, it would help increase positive health outcomes and make physicians' jobs easier in helping their patients make a positive change. This interactive preventative health record has been piloted in eight PCP offices. Through this study, researchers "found that 25.1% of patients with access to an IPHR were up to date on preventative services." The same principle could be integrated into mobile technology. Personal health alerts could be sent to patients' devices to encourage good health practices, as well as remind patients of preventative health services. When patients receive personalized messages from their healthcare provider, they are more likely to take note and follow through.
The wealth of tools afforded to us through current technology opens the potential for better health outcomes. By pushing physicians to fully integrate patient health records with available tools and encouraging patients to take part, the overall health of the country can begin to improve. Medicine is a team effort and the utilization of technology makes the team stronger.