Software development is one of the most thriving industries today.
A plethora of apps are there in the market, and our lives have become intertwined with digital solutions, whether we want them or not. From entertainment and fitness to learning and education, we use apps for a wide array of purposes. To give you a reality check, think about the number of apps you use in a day and the amount of time you spend on them. So does every one of us!
And the healthcare industry is no exception. It has swiftly and gracefully entered into the app industry to provide quality medical services to patients as well as healthcare professionals. We no longer have to deal with the hassle of waiting an hour in queue just to have a 15-minute session with the doctor.
With each passing day, the need for healthcare software development is gradually increasing. McKinsey has stated that technology-driven innovation will lead to an annual value of $350-$410 billion in the healthcare industry by 2025.
But in reality, healthcare institutes have been rather slow in adopting modern technologies to streamline their business operations. Although the reasons might be critical patient care and tight money in such an environment, many healthcare software solutions today result in inadequate satisfaction rates, low user adoption, and wasted capital that you could have used to offer advanced patient care or improve facilities.
With such concerns in mind, we have decided to shed some light on this topic so that your organization can reap tangible benefits from healthcare software solutions.
Let’s dive right in!
What is Healthcare Software Development?
Healthcare software development includes a broad range of activities created to solve different organizational problems in the medical sector and the critical relations between patients and caregivers.
For example, hospital experience, clinical services, insurance claims, electronic health record, etc.
So, healthcare software can establish a complete ecosystem within your organization where you will have the opportunity to provide accurate and higher-quality clinical services.
To be more precise:
- Doctors can easily track and monitor patient health status, schedule appointments, access reports, manage staff, and so on.
- Patients can book appointments, chat and share their reports with doctors, and get health advice.
And these are just a few of the many benefits of software for the healthcare industry.
Healthcare Software Development Market Overview
Software development for the healthcare industry comes with a promise to transform the age-old paper-based infrastructure into a digitalized landscape to ensure more efficient patient safety and care. In 2020, the mobile health industry had a market value of over $45 billion, a pretty impressive figure of such a young industry.
And for quite some time, things were going fine until Covid-19 hit us all. Healthcare firms cut down their IT budget in the beginning (in the first step of the three-phased reaction – respond, recover, and renew), but once they got over the initial shock, many healthcare stakeholders have started to focus on the value proposit0n of software development in this sector.
As a result of the drastic surge triggered by the pandemic and popularity of enterprise software development trends, the mobile health industry has a projected market value of around $100 billion by the end of 2021. With a $17.5 billion Venture Capital-backed investment in healthcare technology, we will see new technical deals like genomics, virtual care, on-demand research or digital labs, clinical administration, medical big data, etc.
In addition, medical software development is giving rise to new sectors as well, like patient engagement, clinical robotics, gamification in healthcare, telehealth, and more.
The overall popularity of healthcare software solutions has propelled many startups to work on their ideas and actualize their vision into reality.
Create a Strong Market Presence With an Advanced Healthcare App
Different Types of Healthcare Software
At this moment, there are over 95 thousand healthcare apps on the Play Store and App Store together, and the number is ever-increasing. Hence, if you are planning to build a healthcare website or app, you must know the different types available in the market. Know the functionalities and categories of existing healthcare projects and then determine your requirements and customization needs.
So, there are two categories of healthcare software; software for patients or general users and software for healthcare professionals.
Let’s discuss each in more detail.
Custom Healthcare Software Development for Patients or General Users
This is pretty self-explanatory. You can now build this type of software to make patients’ or users’ lives a lot easier. These beautifully designed apps are simple, yet very useful, and have many purposes and benefits such as:
1. Health Monitoring Software
From checking symptoms to giving medical treatment advice, health monitoring apps are one of the prime examples of healthcare software implementation. Patients with chronic conditions (like diabetes, cancer, cardiovascular diseases) can also manage their health and take necessary precautions with the help of this software.
2. Medication Tracking Software
Medication tracking apps have recently gained considerable popularity in medical software development. Apart from easily scheduling and reminding patients to take medicines, these apps can help them track nearby pharmacies, what offers those stores are running, etc.
3. Mental Health Software
This kind of app has brought businesses a great opportunity to help users take care of their mental health. Mental health software comes with a plethora of services such as gamification elements, breathing exercises, pre-recorded meditations, and more to help users cope with anxiety, depression, stress, sleeping disorders, etc.
4. Medical Education Software
If you want to create an authentic, well-grounded database for your users with up-to-date medical information, build a medical education app. From regular users to doctors and students, these apps can educate everyone who wants to know more about healthcare.
5. Healthy Lifestyle Software
This type of software covers many different app functionalities like fitness and wellness apps, therapy apps, brain exercise and training apps, etc. All these benefits help can help your lead a healthier lifestyle.
6. Dieting Software
Dieting apps are great examples of custom medical software development. Users can follow healthy eating habits and establish a diet plan through various features like health and food-related information, meal planning, calorie calculator, reminders, and so on.
Custom Healthcare Software Development for Healthcare Professionals
The primary goal of such medical software programs is to bring value and facilitate the overall healthcare process for doctors, physicians, nurses, and other staff at medical institutions. With increasingly sophisticated technology, this category offers advanced features with multiple purposes like:
1. Patient Monitoring Software
Patient monitoring apps help healthcare providers keep a regular check on patients’ health conditions and take effective actions throughout the treatment. Patients can store their test reports and other documents in the app so that doctors can access those anytime they need.
2. Medical Networking Software
Although physicians are usually very busy and do not seem to have much time for social media, they surely need a platform to interact with their colleagues, share their knowledge, and improve decision-making skills. Medical networking apps are some of the prominent cases of healthcare custom software development in this regard.
Telehealth services empower medical professionals to schedule appointments with patients and offer consultations over video calls or quick chats. According to reports, the telemedicine sector will have a market value of $186.7 billion by 2027.
For healthcare workers as well as patients, there are ample reasons to adopt telehealth services. These apps are extremely useful as they bring down the patient “no shows” rate by 50% and enable them to consult doctors from the comfort of their couch.
4. Health Record Software
Medical or health record apps allow medical workers to collect and maintain patients’ electronic health records with ease and convenience, like the details of appointments, prescriptions, tests, medical history, vital indicators (weight, temperature, blood pressure, etc.). Such real-time information is highly critical for physicians to keep a close eye on the overall treatment procedure.
5. E-Prescription Software
E-prescription apps help physicians and healthcare workers generate and send prescription orders so that they can share electronic prescriptions directly with pharmacies and labs from the point of care. Today, advanced healthcare software development services allow you to build such apps and provide improved patient safety and enhanced accuracy to your users.
6. Hospital Management Software
This software type streamlines the whole management and billing process. By digitalizing different tasks like assigning insurance, payment processing, claims management, patient information, account and administrative work, etc., you can optimize staff efficiency and attain the desired outcome.
6 Biggest Trends in Medical Software Development for 2022
As we all know, trends give birth to innovation (and vice versa). With technology advancing rapidly, we have no choice but to embrace it and fulfill the growing needs of the human race.
In this section, we will discover which healthcare technology trends will have the greatest impact on this industry in 2022 and beyond.
1. Big Data
Big data in the healthcare industry helps in managing huge amounts of information on patients’ medical records. You can utilize this cutting-edge technology for a myriad of purposes like curing individual patients, managing hospital performance, cutting costs, preventing epidemics, and much more.
By 2022, the global value of big data in healthcare is very likely to reach $34.27 billion due to increasing investments in e-health records, workforce, and practice management solutions.
2. Artificial Intelligence
Talking about the use of AI in software for healthcare industry, NLP (National Language Proces) deserves the most credit as it serves a variety of purposes – clinical documentation, speech recognition, automated registry reporting, and more.
The market value of AI in healthcare in 2021 was $6.7 billion; not a surprising figure if we consider the usefulness of AI in reducing clinical errors, improved diagnostic accuracy, lower operational expenses, and so on.
3. Remote Monitoring
This medical IT trend facilitates the communication between healthcare professionals and patients through constant monitoring. With a set of wearable medical devices for patients, doctors can access their critical health data, share important data, deliver high-quality medical services, and cut down costs and time.
This will be interesting to watch: Oracle Corp. is in talks to buy electronic-medical-records company Cerner Corp., a deal that could be worth around $30 billion and push the enterprise-software giant further into healthcare https://t.co/5RJbagaarR via @WSJ
— Vicky Tiase 😷 (@vtiase) December 17, 2021
4. Internet of Medical Things (IoMT)
IoMT is the connected ecosystem of medical services, applications, and devices to provide essential care to remote and rural areas as well as to all the people who are unable to leave their homes. The demand for these technologies is so high that the IoMT market is predicted to reach $142.45 billion by 2026.
Some of the key benefits of IoMT are better chronic care management, improved drug management, real-time patient monitoring, growing patient management, etc.
5. AR and VR
The implementation of Augmented Reality and Virtual Reality has tremendous benefits for the healthcare industry. More and more healthcare institutes are increasingly using these technologies to strengthen their digital solutions, establish better connections with patients, and provide quality medical training.
Some notable examples of how you can use AR and VR in custom medical software development are – robotic surgery, medical training, physical therapy, personalized care, post-traumatic stress treatment, emergency treatment, and more.
Accordingly, the AR-VR market has an estimated valuation of $4997.9 million by 2023.
Chatbots and their market benefits have already helped a lot of companies, irrespective of the industry. Although the healthcare industry recently started to use this technology, it has a long, long way to go in the future. Some of the best use cases are – appointment scheduling, basic health checkup, scalable customer service, reduced waiting times, massive cost savings, patients feedback, etc.
Want to Build a Future-proof Healthcare Software with the Latest Technologies?
Healthcare Software Development Process
The sequence of healthcare app development steps might differ from company to company. You can also alter the process as per the requirements of your particular product.
Nevertheless, here we have given out the 5 pivotal stages of developing a robust healthcare app that you should undertake:
1. Discover the Problem You Want to Solve
Developing a mobile app will not suffice in 2021. The expectations of medical professionals, patients, and users are gradually rising, and so is the market saturation.
Hence, the key factors to successful mobile app development is focusing on the right problem and providing an appropriate solution. Conduct thorough market research and observe your competitors to identify the existing gaps and how your product can solve them.
Even if you have defined a problem, we would recommend you to give it another check. You can gather a small group of target users and share your healthcare custom software development idea with them. This way, you can ensure you are approaching the problem from the right point of view or even discover a more beneficial way of looking at it.
Additionally, you can talk to physicians, doctors, nurses, and other medical staff to gain practical insights on how to provide a practically helpful and genuine product for them.
2. Define Your Target Audience
All apps need to have a solid user base, especially healthcare apps, as they aim to offer all-inclusive solutions.
Knowing your target group’s requirements and priorities will help you build an efficient app that will win the hearts of your users instead of assuming and following the hit-and-miss approach.
For example, easy accessibility is a must-have feature for healthcare software. If you are targeting elderly people, you should consider implementing larger buttons, fonts, and simple and clear-cut UI/UX.
Understanding your target audience is immensely helpful in making the whole development process much more convenient. Once you have determined your priorities, consult an experienced healthcare software development company to choose the right UX choices, platform, and tech stack for the best user adoption.
3. Develop a Scalable Design
The very first version of an app usually has some limited functionalities, which is totally fine. Even if your app is small but better targeted at mitigating a particular problem, it can bring much greater value to users.
But, making a scalable app from the start is always the right approach. Over time, you will create better customer personas, and your target audience will grow and hence, you must add new functionalities and updates to improve its performance.
That is why you need to take care of the design rules and code to save yourself from investing extra money and time in the future.
4. Assemble Product Team and Tech Stack
After deciding the core functionalities and design for your app, it is time to bring together the product team to carry out the whole custom healthcare software development process.
Remember that in order to provide real value to your end-users, your team should not be working in silos; meaning, your product team, must include different, individual professionals such as a project manager, senior and junior developers, UX/UI designers, and so on.
Once you have assembled your team, choose the suitable tech stack for your project. Between native or cross-platform app development, you can choose the right framework for targeting iOS or Android users or both.
5. Create a Minimum Viable Product (MVP)
Although you can skip this phase and develop a full-fledged app in one shot, we would still suggest you to create an MVP. In short, an MVP is an initial version of a product with limited features for early customers to use and give feedback.
What is the need for it, you ask?
Well, medical software applications are an expensive affair. Developing an MVP, in the beginning, will help you validate your users’ interest in the product. Ask them to provide constructive feedback so that you can improve your product. And if anything is not working, you will always have the chance to fix it before developing the final product.
6. Start Testing
Do not underestimate the unprecedented value of testing. Software testing enables you to evaluate the user experience of your app, figure out the development issues, collect feedback, and make necessary changes almost instantly.
Testing your app also gives you the opportunity to check the compatibility of your app with the target audience. You can choose between unit testing vs. functional testing, think from the standpoint of users, and reconsider their expectations. Trust me, from years of experience in healthcare software development, we have seen users disliking a number of functionalities that our clients were so excited about.
In a nutshell, with software testing, you can identify bugs, fix them, and make sure your healthcare app has improved with every update.
7. Product Release and Maintenance
At the final stage, your app is ready to release in the market. A fully deployed app will need continuous support and maintenance. You need to understand the importance of mobile app maintenance as your app will be safe from new cyber threats and stay up-to-date in the market with upgraded features and third-part API updates.
If you do not take app maintenance seriously, your healthcare firm might face a big financial penalty with other consequences.
Must-Have Features of Custom Healthcare Software Development
Your healthcare app will only be successful if it has attractive features and offers palpable benefits to users. Here are some of those key features that will add great value to your app and help it stand out in the market.
Features to Look for in Custom Healthcare Software
Your healthcare app should be able to monitor and track a patient’s vital signs like heart rate, pulse, calorie intake, blood sugar, blood pressure, etc.
Registration and Sign-In
Your users should have different ways to register or sign in to the app. They can do it via phone numbers, email, social media handles, etc.
Appointment Scheduling and Reminder
This feature serves both sides. On the one hand, patients and users can book an appointment and get regular reminders about upcoming sessions, medicine intake, sleep, diet, and much/ a lot more. On the other hand, a medical professional can schedule their appointments and manage them throughout.
A decent healthcare app must allow its users to access various parameters of doctors and healthcare centers such as availability, specialty, location, experience, and much more.
If you choose a custom healthcare software development company, ensure the developers deploy a patient information database in your app. It should systematically store medical history, prescriptions, health reports, and other data that both caregivers and patients can access anytime.
Integrating map services (Google Map or any other) with your app can provide immediate information and medical assistance to patients. Patients can find nearby healthcare centers or vice versa in case of an emergency.
Reviews and Ratings
Enable your healthcare app users to give feedback on their treatment experience so that other patients can see and decide whether they should contact the physicians or not. This feature will also help establish patient loyalty and credibility with your healthcare company.
Voice and Video Calls
Online Chat Support
If physicians are not available for a moment, in-app chat should be there to allow users to leave a message or ask a question. They can also get timely assistance through real-time chat and share important media files or documents with doctors.
You can integrate your app with different digital payment solutions like net banking, debit/credit cards, Stripe, PayPal, etc. Secure payment gateways are a crucial part of healthcare custom software development that enable users to pay for insurance, treatment, and other bills conveniently.
And the list does not stop there. Based on your requirements, check out these additional features you can add to your healthcare app:
- User Dashboard
- Photo Gallery
- Access to Information (diseases, patient history, medicines)
- Push Notifications
- Wearable Integration
- Access to EHRs/EMRs
- Report Management
- Cross-Device Accessibility
Develop a Feature-rich Software to Grow Your User Base
9 Popular Examples of Healthcare Software Development
There is a plethora of healthcare apps available in the market, and so it might be challenging for you to pick the promising ones from the rest. But, this list of the best healthcare apps has proved to be credible over time and has a well-built reputation with a huge number of positive reviews.
Have a close look at the most popular healthcare apps and learn from their robust features, as well as any potential gap that you can fulfill.
When it comes to tracking healthcare and fitness activities, Fitbit is the leader. You can connect this app with smartwatches or physical trackers to measure your sleep, oxygen saturation level, heartbeat, workout, and many more. Interestingly, more than 30 million people use this app once a week.
2. Nike Training Club
From amateurs to fitness enthusiasts and experienced gymers, Nike Training Club is one of the best examples of software for healthcare industry. Although Nike released this app a few years ago, the Covid-19 era made it popular as people needed to stay fit in their homes without professional workout equipment.
Although it is primarily a nutrition tracking app, MyFitnessPal offers much more than that. You can go through different catalogs of foods, measure calorie intake, find diet information, set macronutrient goals, etc.
This app is a prominent example of medical software development for physicians and healthcare professionals. Medscape offers up-to-date news and information about the healthcare industry, medical references, disease and drug facts, and so on.
5. Doctor on Demand
With a 4.8 rating on the Play Store, Doctor on Demand is a well-known app for virtual healthcare and its future. Its key features include – live video calls with physicians, GPS tracking, medical record database, emergency case management, etc. The app also contains guides on how to build a healthcare app like it.
This app is a leading example of how you can leverage the benefits of modern technology in medical software applications. With the help of 3D technology, 3d4Medical helps the user navigate through the body efficiently. You can zoom, cut, rotate, and get higher/lower perspectives that conventional media is not able to provide. It also offers great resources for patient learning, such as anatomic animations.
With standard mindfulness features, the primary goal of Headspace is to help adults, as well as children, meditate peacefully and sleep better. It covers a broad range of benefits, including – beginner’s courses, workout videos, program training, a robust community, and so on.
The Pill Reminder and Medication Tracker by Medisafe helps people with personalized reminders to stay on top of their medications. Apart from this, it has other useful features like appointment alerts, doctor visit management, checking drug interactions, and more.
This healthcare app helps senior citizens connect with certified doctors and caregivers without leaving home. It offers in-home visits, telehealth services and works with patients’ health insurance. With an up-front payment system, users can avail a number of services, including mental health care, emergency care, regular care, etc.
Considerations for Custom Healthcare Software Development
The last two years have seen an upsurge of healthcare SaaS startups and product firms around the world, with most of them outsourcing their medical software projects.
But most importantly, where should you outsource? Vendor selection is a complicated and lengthy process, and a wrong choice can ruin the whole project for you.
Here are 5 crucial things you should look for in a software outsourcing company:
1. Technological Expertise
If you have chosen the appropriate tech stack for your healthcare app, ensure that the company has relevant competencies. For instance, a clinical software development company must have sufficient expertise in embedded software development.
2. Industry Knowledge
In order to build a successful healthcare app, the development company must have profound domain expertise. Look for similar projects that they have worked on in the past.
3. Experienced Developers
A healthcare app is a multi-tiered software with varied technologies and complex architecture. Hence, your healthcare software development company must have experienced developers who can work on your project.
4. Scalability and Capacity
Try to hire large or mid-size development firms as, in all likelihood, they are quite experienced in handling large-scale projects with better capacity, tools, and processes. Based on your software project requirements, they should provide you with ample resources and a sizeable team.
5. Security Measures
In order to provide effective healthcare software solutions, you need to deal with huge volumes of sensitive information. Hence, ensure your future outsourcing partner builds a healthcare app that has robust security practices and complies with international security regulations like HIPAA, PCI, ISO.
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Why Choose Radixweb for Healthcare Software Development Services?
Building a perfect healthcare app is a long and tricky process. Not every developer might be competent with it.
That is why Radixweb has a team of seasoned developers who can precisely evaluate your needs and create the best product to take on the market.
As a matter of fact, here is how our team developed Trackpense – a goal-tracking mobile app for personal and professional lifestyle development. With cutting-edge technologies like Java and Objective C, we built this dynamic healthcare app that offers many high-utility features to its users.
It is crunch time to invest your resources in building a healthcare app and ace the market with future-proof solutions. We are ready to help with the best possible top-notch healthcare software solutions. Let’s put some spark into your idea!