Mobile Learning and the Healthcare Industry

Industry News, Research, Top 10 Industries Interested in Mobile Learning Comments (1)

With the question of who exactly is interested in mobile learning, in the back of our mind, Float got down to the bottom of things. By monitoring the companies who have been frequent visitors to our website, downloading our content, and reaching out to our team, we determined which vertical markets are most interested in mobile, microlearning and mobile apps for performance support.    

After studying the key metrics including industries, website visits, documents the individual industries downloaded which, we produced a dataset of the Top 10 Industries interested in mobile learning. Want to see the rest of the list, check this out here.

Here are the results for our 10th and final industry: Healthcare.

The healthcare industry stretches over a wide variety of different sectors, including companies providing medical services, manufacturers of medical equipment and drugs, medical insurance, or any company that provides healthcare to patients.  In addition, it includes doctors, nurses, hospitals, and voluntary organizations. Due to how many groups of people and businesses are involved in this industry, and the nature of their work, it is no wonder why it is in our list of the industries most interested in mobile learning.

In 2013 alone, the U.S. Healthcare Industry employed 1 in 8 Americans. With 40 million Americans are employed by the Healthcare Industry that makes it one of the largest economic sectors in the country.

Why Mobile Learning?

With over 40 million employees, and more students graduating from the healthcare-related fields of study every year, it is no surprise that training is needed. Also, due to the aging population and need to provide health care services to the general population, the number of healthcare professionals is only expected to expand.

Many apps are now available to assist HCPs (Healthcare Practitioners) with many important tasks, like information and time management; health record maintenance and access; communications and consulting; reference and information gathering; patient management and monitoring; clinical decision-making; and medical education and training.

As of October 2015, the Sources & Interactions Study, September 2015: Medical/Surgical Edition reported that four in five physicians (84%) use their smartphone for work reasons. Over half of physicians claimed to use both a smartphone and a tablet for work-affiliated reasons. Because of this high user-usage of mobile devices, it should come as no surprise that application developers saw a need and filled it.

Mobile Learning + Healthcare

In 2016, the amount of global mobile health (mHealth) apps reached 259,000, and today, there are over 59,000 mHealth developers in the leading app stores– and this is a rising trend. The mHealth app market is climbing at 32.5% CAGR (compound annual growth rate). By the end of 2017, mHealth apps reached $26 billion in revenue.

Here are just a few examples of mobile teaching and learning in the healthcare industry:

  • Virtual Stethoscopes
    • iStethoscope is a mobile app which turns your iPhone into a stethoscope. This allows you to listen to your heartbeat and see your heart waveform. They use this to help train those entering the healthcare field and visualize what they are hearing!
  • ECG Readings
    • Instant ECG is just one app that analyzes the most common ECG results. It distinguishes the difference in various myocardial ischemia or injury patterns. Using the iPhone’s interactive touchscreen, the app offers “real-time” films to make rhythm analysis similar to the clinical setting.

  • OB Tools
    • The iPhone app, AirStrip OB, gives obstetricians the ability to see the fetal heart tracing ( “strip”) anywhere- as long as they have a phone and a wifi connection. The app allows the OB to log into the hospital’s Labor and Delivery unit to view virtual and real-time waveform data. Also, the user can view the patient census, nursing notes, vital signs, labor status, physical exams, and maternal/fetal waveforms.

As you can tell by these examples, the sphere of mobile learning within the healthcare sector is full of possibilities.

Eli Lilly & Company is a global pharmaceutical company, was an early user in the mobile learning space which has been using OnPoint’s CellCast Solution for six years. This platform delivers training, and performance support to sales representatives across multiple business lines. Eli Lilly & Company’s use of CellCast has continued to evolve with technology and has grown from low-fidelity BlackBerry content to interactive Apple iPad and Microsoft Windows 8 tablets throughout the CellCast app. Today, over 9,000 sales associates across the world use CellCast for information and training.

Float + Mobile Learning

Float was eager to get involved in this sector of industries. One way that Float has contributed to the mLearning space in the medical field is through the creation of our Pharmaceutical Flashcard application.

Float saw an opportunity and developed a new mobile application for the company’s sales team. This was a huge success because of two reasons: 1) the competitive natures of the different sales representatives and 2) the reps spend up to 80% of their time away from the office. Thus they can play on the go. As an example, 87% of the representatives returned to the app in less than a day, and the average time for a typical game session was 1 minute and 30 seconds.

All of the app’s information is secured using a custom framework that Float has developed to authenticate users and devices. Since the game’s deployment in 2010, there have been many versions of it released for a variety of new product franchises.

Chad Udell, the Managing Partner, New Product Strategy and Development at Float, is enthusiastic about the mHealth industry and the possibilities for learning while on the go.

“We believe pharmaceutical and healthcare organizations have endless possibilities for mobile learning,” Udell says. “It’s easy to imagine soon that a physician can diagnose a disease by recording the sound of a cough on their mobile device, send that file to a network of physicians or even AI, and then identify the sickness purely by the sound file. Mobile learning opens so many doors for an industry like this, and we’re excited to be a part of where it’s headed.”

Check out our infographic below:

So what do you think? What are your thoughts on how mobile learning is used within the healthcare industry? Can you think of any other examples? Are you in the healthcare industry? How are you using mobile technology with your employees?


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Alexis Benson

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On November 7, 2018
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