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How to Build A Telemedicine App

How to Build A Telemedicine App

The post-covid world has seen the rise of technology in every field of life. Telemedicine app development is a great innovation, especially when talking about the medical field. Moreover, these applications provide much cheaper medical facilities than traditional methods. Go through this article to learn everything you need to know about telemedicine app development solutions.

What is a Telemedicine App?

We can define a telemedicine app as software that connects patients with healthcare providers through digital mediums. Overall, it acts like a virtual clinic to offer an alternative to traditional in-person visits. In addition, these apps let patients connect with healthcare professionals through features like video conferencing or secure messaging.

Therefore, doctors can diagnose and prescribe medication based on remote consultation. Plus, telemedicine app developers can design these apps to let caregivers monitor patients. It is possible by allowing patients to share vital signs and other health data with their healthcare team.

Telemedicine Apps Market Overview

Today’s generation likes to save time while doing anything in this busy world. The same is true with medical checkups, where you can observe a remarkable spike in telemedicine trends. According to research by Rock Health, around 80 percent of patients have at least utilized telemedicine facilities once.

In addition, Market Data Forecast stated that the telemedicine market will go above 70 billion dollars by the end of 2024. The same report tells us that this market is expected to reach close to 180 billion dollars in 2029. Many tech giants have started telemedicine app development services upon analyzing these trends.

Why is a Telehealth Solution So Important?

As discussed, telemedicine has been increasing in demand since Corona times. Let’s analyze why these telemedicine app development solutions have become so important in healthcare settings. For this, go over the following section citing the need for telemedicine:

  • Improved Access to Care: As we have mentioned before, telemedicine bridges geographical gaps. By doing so, this solution lets patients in remote areas consult with specialists. Plus, patients with limited mobility can receive regular checkups through these apps without extensive travel.
  • Time-Saving: These apps help patients schedule appointments at their own convenience. Furthermore, it will eliminate waiting room times and the need to take time off work for regular checkups.
  • Affordable Solution: Telehealth app development companies do their best to keep the cost of patient-doctor interaction as low as possible. Therefore, these consultations cost way lower compared to traditional checkups.
  • Reduced Risk of Infection: Regular visits to the hospital make patients vulnerable to several contagious diseases. Telehealth app developers ensure that patients don’t have to go to hospitals to prevent all such concerns.

6 Must-Have Features of Telemedicine Apps

Researchers looking to step into telehealth app development should include the following features in their application. All the above-mentioned benefits are due to the features we are going to explain below. So, go through these features to develop your first telemedicine app.

1. Real-Time Video Consultations

Secure video conferencing is a must to enable virtual consultations between patients and healthcare providers. Moreover, the primary function of this feature is to provide high-quality video and audio transmission for clear communication.

2. Messaging and Chat Support

In addition to video calling, telemedicine app developers should include an in-app chat feature for patients to communicate with their doctors. It is also helpful for post-consultation follow-ups, sharing updates, or requesting prescription refills.

3. Appointment Scheduling

The telemedicine app development solutions should allow patients to schedule appointments. Also, the integration of this feature with calendars can help manage appointments efficiently.

4. Prescription Management

Developers should also look to integrate features with electronic prescription systems to allow doctors to prescribe medications digitally. As a result, it streamlines the prescription process and improves medication management for patients.

5. Payment Processing Methods

A good telemedicine app development service should add secure payment processing capabilities for consultation fees. Moreover, integration with various payment methods can improve the user experience.

6. HIPAA Compliance

Telemedicine apps must follow strict regulations like HIPAA to safeguard patient privacy and data security. This also includes measures like encryption of sensitive information and secure login protocols.

3 Major Types of Telehealth Applications

After getting to know the basics of these telehealth apps, let’s analyze the 3 major types of these applications. So, telemedicine app development companies can utilize their resources to develop any one of the following apps to provide easy access to patients.

1. Store-and-Forward Apps

These apps allow asynchronous communication, providing a non-direct form of telehealth interaction. Patients can send medical data, such as images, videos, or sensor readings, to the telemedicine app. Afterward, this information is then sent to a healthcare provider for review and evaluation. Within this non-direct communication, patients and doctors do not directly interact with each other.

However, healthcare providers can analyze the information and send feedback at their convenience. Typically, this type of telemedicine app development solution is helpful in the radiology, pathology, and dermatology healthcare sectors.

2. Real-time Interactive Apps

Doctors will be able to provide live video consultations to patients using these applications. With the help of these solutions, users can schedule appointments and express their health concerns to healthcare providers. Patients can also send medical records and other relevant information for a better checkup.

In addition, these patients can get diagnosed through these apps and even obtain prescriptions without needing to visit a physical clinic. All of these features allow virtual checkups and even treatment recommendations in real time.

3. Remote Monitoring Apps

Telehealth app developers create such apps to help patients track their health data and share it with doctors. It is precious for the management of chronic conditions or post-treatment follow-ups. Moreover, these solutions may integrate with wearable devices or sensors to collect data such as vital signs and blood glucose levels.

Afterward, healthcare providers can then remotely monitor patients’ progress. Therefore, this type of app is helpful for cancer and diabetes patients with long-term illness.

Telemedicine App Development Challenges

Developers may face a significant number of challenges while creating an application for the healthcare industry. First and foremost, they will face difficulties when protecting patients’ sensitive medical data. Also, telemedicine app development service providers may find it difficult to design an interface for both patients and doctors.

Other than that, it is challenging to integrate them with existing healthcare systems, such as electronic health records. However, the biggest challenge might be encouraging users to adopt this system. Tech companies need to do effective marketing and patient counseling to overcome the lack of awareness.

What is the Cost of Developing a Telehealth App?

The cost to create such an app may vary depending on factors, including user interface and app complexity. As a rough estimate, we can say that you may have to spend up to 40 thousand dollars to develop a simple app for healthcare interactions.

However, medicinal companies needing a complex application will need to pay over 200 thousand dollars. For a better understanding of cost estimates, refer to this budget estimation formula.

Total Cost = Number of Hours required for App Development X Hourly Fee of Developers

If you also want an application to communicate with the patients, estimate the price using this formula. However, the exact rates will be determined by the developers themselves.

5 Key Steps of Telemedicine App Development

All the knowledge you have gotten from this article will help you develop a good application. Moreover, review the following steps to get in-depth insights into the telehealth app development process.

1. Research about App Requirements and Target Audience

Product companies should start by researching the telehealth app market and identify the need for such innovation in a particular sector. After deciding on your ideal users, you can move forward to pick the features they need to include in these apps. Now, developers can determine if you want real-time communication or remote monitoring apps to make doctor-patient interactions possible.

Upon deciding on the features, you can move forward to gather compliance needs for regulations like HIPAA. In addition, preliminary budget planning should be started to help develop telemedicine apps. Overall, this planning process will take you around a month.

2. Begin In-depth Project Planning

Once you have completed all the initial research, it is time to formulate a plan to turn your vision into reality. For this, do the initial project scope identification to test the feasibility and need for your telehealth application. Also, you need to decide what development lifecycle to follow for a smooth telehealth app development operation.

Other than that, setting project schedules and KPIs is also essential to monitor the process throughout the development process. Finally, perform the risk assessment before starting to work on your application. All of this should be done within a week or two so you can move forward to the practical things in a timely.

3. Prioritize the UX/UI Design of Your Application

Upon finishing your planning, you should start working on the user interface of your telemedicine app. For this, identify the significant use cases of your application and decide how you will display the functionalities to provide an easy-going user experience. Plus, performing a user interface prototyping will be a good idea to see how your app will appear in front of the users.

Additionally, you can get help from professional graphic designers to make your UI design pleasing for doctors and patients alike. So, take your time and work for around two weeks to perfect the design of your application.

4. Develop a Telehealth Application with ZEGOCLOUD

Now, coming to the central part of the process, telehealth app developers need an efficient medium to ease out the development operation. ZEGOCLOUD can help you in this regard by providing several APIs and SDKs to integrate into your application. Using its feature-rich chat APIs, developers can add private chat and file-sharing functionalities to their telemedicine apps.

zegocloud sdk for telemedicine app development

Other than that, you can utilize video calling APIs to establish real-time communication between doctors and patients. Plus, these APIs and SDKs will further allow you to share screens and connect to IoT devices during the conversation to help monitor them. ZEGOCLOUD also lets patients and doctors record the session to keep this recording for future reference during the treatment.

Most importantly, it delivers an end-to-end encrypted communication platform to the users. So, making use of these APIs and SDKs will surely speed up the telemedicine app development lifecycle.

5. Keep Working on App Maintenance and Security

After launching your application, you have to keep working on its maintenance to avoid any defects. Also, it is necessary to provide infrastructure support and fix any exposed defects quickly. You should also monitor the security of the application by testing its compliance with HIPAA regulations. Furthermore, telemedicine app development companies should always look to add new features to the app for a better user experience.

How Can You Monetize Telehealth Applications?

After making all these efforts, you may expect some financial returns from your telehealth application. Go over all these app monetization models to learn how to make money from your apps:

  • Subscription Model: Telemedicine app developers can charge users a monthly or annual fee for access to the platform and its core features. For this purpose, you can devise basic and premium plans to cater to the needs of patients from different backgrounds.
  • Freemium Model: Developers wanting to boost their user base can offer a basic level of service for free. In addition, they can add an option to upgrade to premium features for a set price. By doing so, they will be able to attract a broader user base while in-app purchases generate revenue.
  • Additional In-App Purchases: You can also allow users to pay for specific services within the app. These telemedicine app development solutions may include such as medication refills and lab test ordering.
  • Partnerships and Referrals: While working with healthcare systems, you will also get the chance to partner with doctors. You can charge them a referral fee for directing users to their services. Moreover, developers should look to collaborate with pharmacies to offer integrations for prescription refills.

Conclusion

After going through this detailed guide, you now know everything there is to learn about telemedicine app development. Developers looking to create their own app for the healthcare sector can take guidance from this article to streamline their process. In addition, we recommend they use ZEGOCLOUD to get access to chat and video calling APIs for their telehealth apps. With its secure and feature-rich SDKs, telemedicine app developers can speed up their development cycle.

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