Apple and Google aren’t the only big names finding a home inside the healthcare app market. In early October, Facebook sources leaked the potential release of a healthcare app to Reuters (a leading site in information and business).
The app would allow users to form “support communities” for those suffering from illnesses. They are also considering a “preventative care” application designed to help users live healthier lifestyles.
Could this idea be successful? In 2012, Facebook added an organ donor status to users’ profiles to specify whether they were registered organ donors or not. The American Journal of Transplantation recorded 13,054 new organ donors on the day Facebook launched the initiative. The usual daily sign-up count is 616 new registered donors.
All members of practice staff and physicians should keep an eye on the development of this app. It could provide better listening tools to understand patient needs. Patients may come in more informed about illnesses or have more questions based on what they read through the app.
This is a great example of how technology brings the patient perspective outside the doctor’s office and into a space for all to read. We will continue to update our blog on the status of this developing story.