The landscape of mobile healthcare apps is filled with all-in-one packages--the combination physician finder, health library, ER wait times, contact-us bundles. Which are nice, but feel just too...bundled. I wanted to do something unique to us and our hospital, but also unique in the world of healthcare apps.
I wanted to create something fun. Maybe like a hospital version of Angry Birds.
But a great interactive agency came up with an idea that we couldn't pass up. They developed an app that could save a patient's life.
I was surprised to learn there were no In Case of Emergency (ICE) apps available, despite the years that hospitals have campaigned for people to ICE their phones. If a person's phone is ICE'd, that means first responders have easy access to the person's emergency contact information.
So, we put a hospital version of Angry Birds on hold--at least for now. Instead, we launched an app that can conveniently stores ICE info on your iPhone's (and in June, Droid's) wallpaper. It also includes information about current medications, allergies, and a map to our hospital from wherever your phone is located. Awesome.
In case you are in need any further justification to take your health care organization mobile, the Pew Internet & American Life Project has been tracking trends in mobile health and presents these facts:
- 85% [of adults] use a cell phone. Of those:
- 17% of cell owners have used their phone to look up health or medical information and 29% of cell owners ages 18-29 have done such searches.
- 9% of cell owners have software applications or "apps" on their phones that help them track or manage their health. Some 15% of those ages 18-29 have such apps.
We believe 100% of cell phone owners should ICE their phones. We're just happy to help make it easier.
Now, back to playing Angry Birds...