Yes (Iltifat Husain):
A health app is a piece of smartphone software that purports to offer the user some health benefit. Many of these apps are aimed at people with diagnoses; for example, they teach the correct use of an asthma inhaler or collect blood pressure results by syncing wirelessly with a blood pressure monitor. But many are aimed at people with no diagnosis: for example, apps that allow users to track their calorie intake and exercise, or even their sleep patterns.
No (Des Spence):
Medical technologies abound: retinal implants, cochlear implants, robotic limbs, and even the prospect of an implantable pancreas. Google is developing a contact lens sensor that continuously monitors blood sugar concentrations. These modern miracles lack enough superlatives to describe them. But another technological wave is rising: medical apps for smartphones and tablets. These supposedly promote mental health, aid sleep, cause weight loss, control food allergy, aid self diagnosis, manage pain, and help in every other conceivable medical condition. Indeed, some are endorsed by the NHS.
Read the full argument of both commentators: Can Healthy People Gain from Health Apps (Husain & Spence, 2015)
Husain, I. & Spence, D. (2015) Can Healthy People Gain from Health Apps? Available from World Wide Web: http://www.bmj.com/content/350/bmj.h1887.full.pdf+html [Accessed: 21 April, 2015].
You must log in to post a comment.