Research firm Signals and Systems Telecom forecasts that the market for mobile health will reach nearly $9 billion this year, and will grow at a CAGR of nearly 40 per cent over the next six years.
Among the opportunities highlighted by the study are the use of 4G networks for remote doctor-patient consultation. Operators can also offer their networks for other latency and bandwidth-sensitive applications. The study gives an example of London’s Air Ambulance which uses EE’s LTE network for navigational support.
Enterprise applications might prove popular in the pharma industry, ranging from R&D to securing supply chains and supporting campaigns against counterfeit drugs.
Mobile health also promises cost savings. The study has put a very substantial figure on what is possible. It forecasts $250 billion in savings globally in annual healthcare costs by the end of 2014.
However there are barriers to take-up including regulation, patient acceptance and privacy concerns that need to be overcome, it said.