Mobile Technology as a mechanism for delivering improved Quality of Life

Authors: Pulman, A.

Conference: Handheld Learning 2009

Dates: 5-7 October 2009


A United Nations agency report earlier this year showed that more than half the global population now pays to use a mobile phone (Tryhorn, 2009), whilst a London School of Economics report noted that almost a quarter of Internet users had visited a social networking site on a mobile phone or Smartphone (Haddon, 2008). Looking to the future, a survey by Anderson and Rainie (2008) predicts that by the year 2020, most people in the world will be using a mobile device as their primary means of connecting to the Internet.

Lord Darzi acknowledged in his 2008 review - High Quality Care for All – that he had been made aware that people wanted a greater degree of control and influence over their health and healthcare and thought this even more important for those who found it harder to seek out services or make themselves heard. Mobile technology could offer great opportunities for providing accessible personalised healthcare management, information and support. The Vodaphone Group (2006) suggest that one area where mobile applications offer potential value for healthcare is improving the effectiveness of healthcare (and reducing the risk of more serious complications) through improved self-management and monitoring of patients with chronic conditions, and improved adherence to treatment programs. Chronic conditions such as diabetes place significant, and increasing, demands on healthcare services, with between 5 and 10% of total UK NHS resources used for the care of people with diabetes. But if there were better control of the disease the World Health Organisation (2003) estimates treatment costs could be reduced by 25%.

This paper outlines how mobile technology could be used as a potential mechanism for delivering improved health-related Quality of Life (HRQOL) to people with long-term conditions (LTC). It also discusses the possibilities and problems of using a mobile delivery mechanism to provide information to and receive information from individuals in an effective and user-friendly manner.

Source: Manual

Preferred by: Andy Pulman