Best Strategies and Practices for Custom Healthcare App Development

Not only has the difficult time of 2020 affected our lives, but also the market for healthcare apps.

CB Insight’s report shows that there has been a 300% rise in investments in the healthcare industry. This includes health education, remote monitoring of patients, consultations, and more.

To remain competitive, businesses need to develop their mobile applications. If you have debated creating your healthcare app, now is the time.

The fitness industry has also grown tremendously. Developing an app is an excellent investment for entrepreneurs and businesses.

As AI, blockchain, and cloud-based applications grow, healthcare organizations increasingly look to companies that develop apps to keep pace with this rapid development.

We will examine the healthcare app development, what they can do, and how they could benefit specific sectors. Let’s first examine how a healthcare app works in general.

Market Statistics of Healthcare Industry

In the future, patients and caregivers can choose between a wide range of dynamic healthcare apps. The Covid-19 outbreak has increased the market value of the healthcare industry to new heights.

Research and Markets estimates that the global health app market is expected to grow from US$28.320 Billion in 2018 to US$102.35 Billion in 2023. This represents a CAGR of 29.30%.

The use of mobile apps has also increased significantly. Global app downloads increased by 60% since the beginning of Covid-19.

Google Play had 53,054 applications for health in the first quarter of 2021. Apple App Store had 53,979 iOS health applications in the first quarter of 2021.

By 2020, digital health investors are expected to have invested $21.6 billion into the healthcare industry. This is a record.

These numbers show that mobile technology for health is becoming more popular. Unsurprisingly, healthcare professionals and firms invest in developing healthcare apps.

What are Healthcare Apps?

A mobile healthcare app is an assortment of different applications with different purposes, including tracking health data, providing remote assistance, consulting a virtual doctor, etc. Apps are classified according to their purpose.

Understanding the ideal category for your app is crucial to ensuring that you target the correct market and audience. Understanding the different types of apps in the industry will help you choose the best one for your company.

#Professional Healthcare Apps

These apps facilitate communication between doctors and patients.

DrChrono and Locus Clinician are the two best examples.

List of professional apps types:

  • Apps for Doctor Appointments
  • Apps for electronic medical/health records
  • Apps for medical reference
  • Database applications
  • Apps that track your health.
  • Networking apps (for doctors);
  • Telemedicine apps.

#Healthcare Apps for Patients

These apps don’t require the involvement of doctors. These apps usually provide patients with a great deal of helpful information. BetterMe and Lifesum are the best examples in this category.

This category includes a variety of apps, including:

  • Apps for Medical Education
  • Reminder Apps
  • Apps for a healthy lifestyle
  • Dieting apps
  • Apps for diagnosis and prevention
  • Fitness Apps

Major Challenges in Healthcare Application Development

The challenges of developing healthcare apps are unique. It is essential to overcome and navigate these obstacles effectively to create successful healthcare apps. Explore some of the critical challenges in healthcare app development.

Complex Regulatory Landscape

Healthcare apps must adhere to strict regulations and standards to ensure patient privacy and safety.

For example, the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act sets strict guidelines for handling patient information in the United States. You must understand the rules and implement robust security measures to adhere to these regulations.

Interoperability Issues

The healthcare system relies on various platforms, devices, and electronic health records. One of the biggest challenges in developing healthcare apps is ensuring seamless interoperability across different systems and data sources.

User Experience Issues To ensure engagement and adoption, healthcare apps should place a high priority on the user experience. Patients and healthcare professionals expect easy navigation and intuitive interfaces.

Privacy & Security Issues

In the development of healthcare apps, it is vital to protect sensitive patient data. Data breaches can have severe consequences, including damage to the reputation of healthcare providers.

Protenus’ 2023 breach barometer reports show that healthcare data breaches have affected more than 59 million patient records.

It is essential to implement encryption and secure authentication and conduct regular security audits to protect patient information.

Lacking of Focus in Single Domain

A doctor or patient installing a health application often looks for a solution to one problem, not several. Instead of an app that addresses multiple problems at the surface, a healthcare application that addresses one issue in its most depth will have a greater success rate.

Multiple Channels and Devices

Interoperability is a significant challenge in developing healthcare applications with various devices, including smartphones, personal assistants, and smart TVs. It is difficult to guarantee that private medical data in the cloud cannot be hacked.

To overcome these challenges, businesses should partner with a reliable, experienced hospital mobile app developer.

Non-Compliance with the Law

Multiple compliance bodies are responsible for the behavior of mobile health. The fear of needing to comply with industry-specific regulations can make healthcare stakeholders doubt the app. The absence of FDA approval puts off stakeholders, a HIPAA-compliant badge on the application’s home screen, or screenshots in the Apple App Store or Google Play Store.

Best Startup Ideas for Healthcare Apps

It’s important to stay up-to-date with the latest changes and trends in the medical field if you want to start a successful company in this industry. Staying informed will help you position your business for growth and success.

Here are some of the best ideas:

Appointment App

Apps allow patients to locate the right doctor and receive the best possible consultation.

These apps also allow doctors and patients to schedule appointments for the best online consultation.

Reminder App

These apps have a simple goal: to remind users to take their medications on time. Add this app to your app, making it a great feature. Apps that send reminders to patients to take their medications can improve the patient experience.

Fitness app

Fitness apps allow users to track their health. This includes tracking steps, calories burned, heart rate, calorie intake, and exercise.

Fitness has become increasingly popular. By 2022, there will be 87.4 million mHealth users.

To maximize the functionality of your app, we recommend that you integrate it with wearables, such as smartwatches and other gadgets used to track health.

Adoption of Medical Apps during COVID-19

Demand for mobile app development was increasing steadily every year among healthcare organizations. The pandemic triggered a real surge in demand and popularity for healthcare apps.

The COVID-19 pandemic has seen the development of healthcare mobile applications in developed and developing nations. The survey revealed that 41.9% of adults in Germany (EU) have started using pandemic medical apps for their patients. 66.3% of app users agree that using pandemic apps is a duty.

Online therapy and advanced telehealth have become the most popular ways to reduce face-to-face interactions between patients and healthcare workers.

Mobile health is a growing industry aiming to deliver better patient care through mobile apps. Medical applications have been made more commonplace by COVID-19, including remote monitoring systems, online payments, virtual consultations, and electronic prescriptions.

Use Cases of Healthcare Applications

It’s best to choose an application that suits your needs and goals. You must keep track of the latest trends and use them in your healthcare applications.

The healthcare market today offers a wide range of app uses.

You can see some of the hottest ones here.

Electronic Health Record

EHR/EMR systems allow you to collect, track, store, and update a patient’s medical information in one place.

It eliminates errors and saves time.

Diagnostic Systems Built-In

The system allows for the collection and processing of data from embedded devices and IoT platforms integrated with EHR platforms.

Doctors can track patients’ progress and decide treatment by easily visualizing, analyzing, and diagnosing their condition.

RCM & Medical Billing

The RCM (Reliability-centered maintenance) solution offers a medical billing system that covers the EHR (Electronic Health Record) and PM (Practice Management) services.

You can navigate easily between apps without signing in separately for each one. You can easily review patient records on the move and check your bills.

The solution lets users avoid expensive hardware and worry about data encryption or security compliance.

Telehealth & Telemedicine

Today, telehealth software and telemedicine solutions are in high demand between doctors and patients.

These applications are especially popular during the COVID-19 pandemic and social isolation.

With these technologies, medical specialists can now communicate online, deliver remote medical services, and receive efficient medical care more quickly.

Health Information Exchange (HIE).

It is essential to track vital signs, such as blood pressure, body temperature, heart rate, and so on, to diagnose correctly and maintain patients’ well-being and quality.

Using smartphone authentication, HIE allows you to measure a patient’s vital parameters quickly and easily.

This allows the system to transfer data faster while doctors monitor and analyze all the necessary information.

E-prescribing (eRx)

The E-Prescription system allows you to create, store, and send prescriptions using the electronic health ecosystem’s medical information system.

One of the many benefits that such a system can provide is the reduction in errors at the check-out and the amount of time that both a doctor and patient can save.

Considerations to Focus While Developing a Healthcare Applications

Finding the right solution to a problem can be difficult. Focusing on some key points and considering specific considerations is essential to create an app that will satisfy all parties involved. Let’s walk through the top tips for developing a healthcare mobile app.

Digital Strategy

Digital strategy is crucial, even if it seems to be unrelated to the process of developing a health application. You need to thoroughly analyze your market, your competitors, and the needs that your solution is designed to address.

You already know the type of app you want to create and your target audience. You need a mobile app strategy, whether it’s for medical professionals or patients. How will you distribute and monetize your solution? How big is the target user base?

The OS platform is another critical decision. Android is still a famous mobile OS, but you shouldn’t ignore iOS users. You can launch the application on one platform and then make it available for another if you work with a tight budget.

You can always start the healthcare mobile app development as an MVP. Test it to see if it meets user needs and make any necessary adjustments. You can then move on to delivering a fully-fledged app.

Data Security and Regulatory Compliance

In the healthcare industry, security is always a key factor. Medical software contains a wealth of private and sensitive information. Therefore, the responsibility for privacy and safety is to be addressed.

If you want to add extra security, there are better ideas than storing app data on the device. Storing data in the app server, designed for speed and efficiency rather than security, may also lead to data leakage. Sounds puzzling?

  • Data Encryption

In this situation, the solution would be to ensure confidentiality using encrypted communication channels and secure encryption. Consider using end-to-end encrypted communication channels to protect sensitive health data further.

  • Authentication

Multi-factor authentication is most effective when it is implemented where it’s needed. This additional layer of protection will reduce authentication risks by protecting your app. Do not misuse it. You want clinicians and staff to be able to handle the workload.

  • Possible Penetration

Protect your app against possible penetration. Being prepared is the best defense. Hackers, social engineering, or man-in-the-middle attacks can threaten apps. Double-check all possible breaches and eliminate security flaws.

  • Regulatory Compliance

The laws and rules governing medical data are also important. These laws and regulations vary according to the region, the type of content medically related, and even the language used. Research before developing your application to ensure it is safe with these rules.

Data exchange is made secure by healthcare messaging standards and general requirements to protect personal health information. Ensure that your app complies with these standards.

Here is a list of the main ones:

  • HIPAA. You must follow this act when building a health application. HIPAA governs how PHI is handled by insurance and healthcare companies to prevent fraud and theft.
  • FHIR. It is a necessary standard that describes data formats, elements, and APIs. Consider it if you are developing a solution for electronic health records.
  • Health level 7. HL7 aims to protect the patient’s data. It is used to create a healthcare application that ensures safe data transfers between medical organizations.
  • Direct. This standard guides the encryption and digital signature of messages containing PHI.

It’s not as simple as ABC! If you are starting in this field, choose an experienced developer team. They will know the standards to adhere to and what policies medical data falls under.

API Components

APIs make it simple for software to exchange data and interact with one another. Imagine two river banks, unrelated apps, that are connected via an API. Data can flow between the apps, regardless of how they were originally designed.

You will first need APIs to integrate a new mHealth application with an existing healthcare system and third-party tools and services. Your goal in this situation is to improve interoperability and streamline operations while providing a better quality of care for patients.

Consider the possibility that you may need to request additional APIs from vendors and suppliers to simxplify workflows. Sometimes, you may need to ask vendors and suppliers for additional APIs to streamline workflows. Not all of them are open to third parties.

You can also encourage app developers and healthcare app development service providers to integrate your service with theirs. You will need to create an API in this scenario.

Focus on privacy and security when developing your API. It is important to keep records private, and only doctors, insurance companies, or patients can access them. Consider creating well-defined API documentation.

Compatibility and Interoperability

Interoperability should be a significant consideration when developing your app.

Hospital staff may use many different types of software and equipment, including dermatological sensors and EHR systems, scheduling apps, and practice management systems. You must ensure your app can interact effectively with existing software in the typical healthcare facility ecosystem.

Hosting is another factor to be considered. Cloud computing is essential. It protects your data by storing it on multiple servers. It also provides better performance and 100% uptime. It is why enterprise mobility solutions for healthcare, such as scheduling applications, rely so heavily on it.

Many hospitals are still installing traditional hosting, whether it is shared or dedicated. They do this because they believe that the cloud will be less expensive. A compatibility layer in your app will allow your app to work with existing setups.

UI & UX Considerations

User experience and interface design are essential topics that will always be remembered. When developing and perfecting a mobile healthcare app, you should pay close attention to UI/UX design. It is a critical factor in keeping your audience engaged.

Both doctors and patients use medical applications frequently today and spend a great deal of time entering data. Try to simplify the design of your application and focus on ease of use. Keep it simple. Visuals must be relevant, harmonious, and contain plain elements.

Patients using the app are likely to be in a vulnerable condition or may even be undergoing treatment. The best way to convey a message is through peaceful and comforting feelings.

Mobile App for Healthcare with IoT Devices

In the last few years, IoT has become a hot topic. Statistics show that this is more than just a vague or hyped-up assumption. According to the Reports and Data summary, the Medical Internet of Things Market is expected to reach 260.75 Billion US$ in 2027 at a CAGR of 19%.

Health is wealth today. A growing number of people from all generations are leading a healthier lifestyle, stimulating the global market for health and wellness. The public’s health awareness is increasing, so medical services must be more extensive.

IoT devices are an excellent solution, as they can be faster, better, and sometimes cheaper. These devices can help reduce treatment time by offering remote monitoring, medical assistance, and smart hospital solutions.

What are some of the IoT devices used in the healthcare industry? Here are some of the most popular:

  • Wearables
  • Hearables
  • Moodables
  • Healthcare charting
  • Sensors that can be ingested
  • Computer vision technology

There are several challenges to consider regarding medical IoT, including various devices, communication protocols, and standards.

Data Security

We know the data is transferred from IoT sensors and devices to a system and stored in cloud storage. Be vigilant when using cloud-based features. Consider using top-notch encryption and ensuring that your protection is up to date.

Multiple Devices and Protocols

IoT can connect many devices. For a flexible system to be created, they should all connect and aggregate data without any hindrance. If there are no standard communication protocols, you should still ensure that your app follows guidelines such as HIPAA or FIPS. These contain many rules and regulations. Keep in mind also the API consideration that we have mentioned.

Data Surcharge

IoT devices and sensors can generate an enormous amount of data. Consider a storage solution that can store a large volume of data for an unlimited time when developing your IoT application. Find out how much data is stored in the cloud. Data engineers and analytic experts can help you achieve this goal.

Best Practices for Healthcare App Development

Healthcare software development is a complex and challenging process involving hundreds of subprocesses. Starting and then stopping is not a good idea, as this will only add time and cost. Here are some factors you should consider before beginning the app development.


Businesses should concentrate on a single app category, even if the healthcare industry has a variety of app categories such as postoperative care, fitness tracking, appointment booking, etc. Focusing on one expertise area and taking time to offer multiple applications within a single application allows companies to provide a high level of value and help stakeholders with their specific pain points.

Selection and Feature Set

The features of healthcare mobile apps are crucial to the success of any health solution. The features vary greatly depending on the type of app, but some elements are common to all. These elements include, but are not restricted to:

  • Health monitoring
  • Schedule appointments
  • In-app payments
  • Wearables and integration
  • Reporting functionality
  • Social integration (if it is a fitness application)

Hardware Selection

The app you plan to launch does not need to work on a smartphone. You can launch a desktop or wearable version. It is important to note that you have various hardware options for pushing your application. Having two or more devices work together may be necessary. You should select hardware that is capable of co-working in such a scenario.

Medical Practitioners in Core Team

Mistrust is one of the most significant issues that can lead to your mHealth failing. This stems from incorrect or incomplete information within the healthcare app. This problem could be the deciding factor in your mobile app’s legality and market success. This issue can be quickly resolved by including a doctor in your team to ensure the accuracy and relevance of the health content.

Here are eight best practices to ensure that your app is successful.

Follow all The Compliance Rules

Healthcare industry compliance is strict in terms of legal and security protocols. When developing a mHealth app, you must adhere to several legal compliances. Some of the standard compliances include HIPAA, HIMSS, FDC, etc. Make sure your app is compliant with the following:

  • HIPAA- All US healthcare organizations must adhere to HIPAA guidelines to ensure protected health data (PHI) privacy and security.
  • The CCPA is the US law that governs the basis of confidentiality. It requires the client to be informed about the data collected and the management of the data report.
  • GDPR is a rule for personal data protection introduced in Europe in 2018. All healthcare apps in the European Union that collect and store data must adhere to GDPR.
  • NIST This is a collection of standard protocols and tools created to protect the user’s data when using medical applications.
  • HiTech- These protocols are more focused on the security of EHR systems and are quite applicable to medical apps.
  • PIPEDA – If you are developing a mHealth application for the Canadian market, it must comply with PIPEDA.


The essence of mobile healthcare apps is to transfer information from one device to another. One of the best hospital app development practices is to develop a real-time, 100% secure line of interoperability.

Hack-Proof Cybersecurity

Health applications must be 100% hacker-proof to prevent data breaches and theft. By adhering to legal compliances such as HIPAA and HIMSS when creating a healthcare application, you adhere to the level of security, which means your app is safe from malicious cybercriminals. You can also use a biometric lock on your screen to improve the security of your app and prevent data breaches.

The Key Takeaway

Developing a healthcare application is a unique process that requires careful planning and consideration. Following the strategies and best practices discussed above will help you overcome these challenges to create a successful healthcare app that delivers value for users.

Keeping up with the latest healthcare and technological trends can help you stay on top of your competition and offer innovative solutions.

When you begin your journey to develop a healthcare app, do not hesitate to consult with healthcare app development company for help. You can hire healthcare experts, mobile app designers, and developers who can offer valuable insight and ensure your project’s success.

Use these insights in your projects. Adapt them to meet your needs and iterate continuously based on user feedback.

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