SMS Clinic

furthering mobile health research

The rapid development of various computer network technologies has facilitated the implementation of health systems that take advantage of vast, commercial signal transmission. Since the 1970’s, this technology has been imperative to the healthcare field in giving rise to what is broadly known as telemedicine, which relies on interactive information technology to deliver healthcare services. The penetration and efficiency of information exchange through these networks has led to the growth of some modern areas of medical best practices that would be impossible without their existence, like radiology.

In mHealth, a more specific category of telemedicine which relies on mobile telephones to provide health services, the prospects of future applications have dramatically improved for a number of reasons. Among those are decreased costs to mobile technologies and applications, greater opportunities for integration into existing eHealth schemes, and seemingly limitless growth in the coverage of mobile cellular networks. The growth of mobile network coverage is even evident in developing countries, which lack most other components of an efficient healthcare system. At the end of 2013, there were over 6 billion mobile phone users reported worldwide, and almost 5 billion of those represented users living in developing countries. Consequently, mHealth presents a unique opportunity in some low and middle income countries which lack the resources to take advantage of other possible mediums for healthcare system strengthening.