The Journal of mHealth Vol 2 Issue 4 (August) - Page 43

mHealth in Developing Countries Global health issues are being instigated by the rising cost of healthcare. In developed nations such as the U.S., where the cost of healthcare is one of the highest worldwide as revenues for healthcare institutions drop, it is wise to look beyond our own borders and adopt low-cost mHealth innovations being used in developing nations. While the many examples of mHealth solutions showcased in this paper provide much hope for a positive future in global health, there are many challenges to be faced. Among the most difficult is the scaling-up for mHealth pilot programs to become global ventures and worldwide healthcare solutions. As healthcare innovators and entrepreneurs, we should look to these challenges as opportunities in the global mHealth space, and also begin focusing on mHealth innovations in developing countries. References Exhibit 5: Medtronic Mini Pacemaker (image source: look-medtronics-miniature-pacemaker) in healthcare and changes in health behavior.31 Without performance measurements of healthcare outcomes, global scalability is impossible. Furthermore, healthcare delivery programs are designed on the spot, funding streams are fragmented, and there is a lack of standards for capturing what is learned in the field.32 All this inhibits the process of scaling up an mHealth project. This is the largest and most common challenge in the global mHealth space. Many pilots never become national or international ventures. mHealth experiments focus too much on pilot projects, and not on population health research and the criteria for those types of studies. Scale for mHealth projects can be accomplished in two ways. The first is establishing financial sustainability. The second involves integration with larger healthcare systems and national government programs.33 This has proved most difficult. The lack of scale can also deter reverse innovation; preventing certain mHealth in