Mobile Telecommunication Technologies for Nutrition and Health
In the not so distant past, the thought of having a portable device capable of sending/receiving messages and phone calls at any time and place was science fiction. Today the number of active cell phones is estimated at 7.3 billion. More cell phones than people on this planet.
We are on the precipice of adopting mobile telecommunication technologies (mHealth) to manage our health and wellness. According to Steinhubl and colleagues, three factors are driving mHealth acceptance: 1) the importance of disruptive solutions to contain growing health care costs, 2) rapid growth in wireless connectivity, and 3) desire for more precise and individualized medicine. Like any new technology, or even food purchases, increased convenience will only attract some users. Price is always important.
If you wish to learn more about mHealth tools, plan to attend the 3rd International Vitamin Conference in Washington DC on May 12-15, 2014. The Tuesday Lunch and Learn will be a lecture entitled “Transforming Nutrition Assessments with Mobile Platforms” given by Dr Alain Labrique, founding director of the Johns Hopkins University Global mHealth Initiative. He is leading researcher investigating the impact of mobile information and communications technologies on improving maternal, neonatal and infant outcomes in resource-limited environments.
The future is upon us.
Huckvale K, Car J. Implementation of mobile health tools. 2014 JAMA doi: 10.1001/jama.2014.1106
Steinhubl SR, Muse ED, Topol EJ. Can mobile health technologies transform health care? 2013 JAMA doi: 10.1001/jama.2013.281078