Mobile Apps Are Changing Behaviors & Patient Care
You may have heard of asynchronous college classes, courses where class lectures and content are sent out in electronic messages and class spaces. But have you heard of asynchronous care? Research now suggests that certain types of healthcare can be successfully delivered online!
A group of investigators recently asked the question, “Could online messaging help patients quit smoking?” Because patients do not typically make appointments until something is wrong, it is rare for physicians to have face-to-face interaction about quitting smoking unless a patient is in the office for an annual visit or another issue. A patient and physician could discuss a quit attempt in the office, but without some other connection, they will not touch base again until the next annual appointment. But what if that physician had some way to reach out in between appointments. Would that care and support help patients quit?
The research study sent digital portal messages to designated smokers encouraging them to quit and offering physician assistance either in person or asynchronously.
Interestingly enough, many difficult to reach patients engaged with the content. Rural patients, who are less likely to come in for medical care, were opening and reading the messages. Likewise, younger populations, who are also less likely to go see a physician in person, were interacting with the messages as well. Both of these populations also tend to smoke more than other populations.
What about you? What keeps you from asking for physician support? Sometimes significant health habits do not feel “doctor visit worthy.” Who wants to pay a co-pay to talk about drinking more water or how to get better sleep? Or maybe you have experienced a health issue where you did not want to call for an appointment, but you wish you could have the expertise of a physician. Online medical portals and apps allow patients to interact with physicians without jumping through the healthcare system hoops.
Now, apps like ALYKA Health allow you to look for your health data from wearable devices and medical portals all in one place. Can’t remember all those different medical passwords or websites? No worries! When your health information is integrated into one place, you can securely access everything you need to stay healthy in one central location.
Need to quit smoking? Need more accountability with diet or exercise? Consider letting your phone more quickly connect you to the care you need.