5 things that distinguish health app development from others
What makes healthcare app development special? Find out 5 unique factors of healthcare application development.
What are healthcare apps?
Health apps are a part of digital healthcare transformation that affects the future of global healthcare. Health apps support patients and medical staff in managing their daily duties and tasks. They often help patients manage their chronic disease and support nurses and doctors in their daily work. They are important tools which can really facilitate people’s life and health habits, but we have to keep in mind that compared to medical apps they don’t have an ability to directly influence the patient’s medical state.
Healthcare and medical apps – understanding the difference
Although this article focuses on healthcare apps, we should establish the main differences between healthcare and medical apps. Healthcare and medical software both support the well-being of the patient and the efficiency of medical workers. However, medical apps have a bigger influence on patients’ state or life in some cases. A great example may be medical apps that manage the heart pacemakers. Any problem with the software may directly affect the user’s/patient’s life. That is why, medical apps have to be certified and approved by the national authorities.
5 factors that make healthcare app development unique
Although – compared to medical software development – the pressure is lower, healthcare startups still have to take these factors into consideration:
1. App security
‘Hold on! Security is important in every case’, some would say. And that’s true. However, the consequences of the data breach of a health app that stores medical information are often bigger. In terms of health apps, security bugs can result in leaking fragile information regarding the state of patients, their health history or taken medicine. The stake is simply higher than when it comes to, for example, developing apps that help you find the right restaurant.
2. Offline mode
If you think that offline mode is so not 2021, then you may be surprised. Health apps need to be treated a little bit differently. For example, when you plan to build an app for hospital doctors which shows the medical history of their patients, you need to make sure that they have access to the data at every time in every possible place around the whole hospital. Doctors cannot risk the patients’ safety using an app that wouldn’t operate without the internet. The data has to be synchronised as soon as users have an internet connection.
3. Greater risk behind every update
Every change in production is a challenge and comes with a risk of how it affects users. In terms of healthcare app development, it is again more complex. Any software update cannot negatively affect the app functionality because we are talking about the software that provides a medical history of patience. Doctors need to have access to this data all the time.
4. More pressure on code review
Again, code reviewing is important for every app development. However, when it comes to health solutions the stake is often higher. That is why the members of any healthcare software development team are usually experienced developers who know how to test their code and understand the importance of code reviewing. Also, the development team should include QA engineers.
5. It’s not about beauty here
Health apps should be simple for users. Although simplicity is definitely a trend in product design during health app development it should be taken even into the next level. When you create an app that is supposed to check a patient's blood pressure, your product should be simple. In contrast to entertaining or lifestyle apps you don’t need many fancy designs that attract users. An app for blood pressure checking has to eliminate every distraction even if it means that it is not very attractive for the human eye.