On 12 April 2023 14:00-15:30 CET, the European mHealth Hub relaunched its activities with its tenth talk - Hub Talk #10 – entitled “You have an adopted mHealth solution, how did you succeed?”
The mHealth Hub Talks are a dissemination vehicle addressed to the community of mHealth stakeholders. The talks feature numerous relevant and timely topics, including innovation and financing. The ultimate goal is to convene and engage both supply and demand sides in a fruitful conversation and share knowledge. Since the Hub’s start, ten Hub Talks have been organised. They are available at the Hub.
This 12 April 2023 event was geared to all current, and potential future, mHealth Hub members as well as the EHTEL community, for whom this was their second 2023 Imagining 2029 webinar. Over ninety people registered for the event, and some sixty attended the webinar itself. Among the European countries where attendees came from most often were Belgium, Greece, Finland, Portugal, and the United Kingdom.
The talk examined what business models are relevant to health apps companies, and the experiences of two companies and their successes with apps in the two fields of rehabilitation and mental health. Implicitly the talk had a hybrid models of care theme, since it covered contrasting means of financing, markets, and types of intervention (although focused mostly on the French context, its findings are application to both insurance scheme-oriented health systems and services or national health service-oriented ones). Interactions occurred among clinics, businesses, and people at home. The types of health interventions presented occurred in two different disease areas.
The webinar presentations, videos, and this short report are now available online. Meanwhile, here’s a short summary of some of the webinar’s main subjects. It covers:
- Mobile apps and medical devices.
- A digital clinic to treat physical health conditions.
- Digital support for mental health by employers.
- Reasons for success.
- Polls and conclusions.
Background: Hani ESKANDER of the International Telecommunication Union (ITU), a specialised agency of the United Nations, spoke on behalf of the ITU and the World Health Organization (WHO) about the relaunch of the mHealth Hub. Now orienting itself as a service, the Hub will begin to focus on patient-facing services, secondary use of data, and innovation in artificial intelligence (AI), as well as continuing its work on assessment frameworks. The Hub is now operated by three organisations: EHTEL, I~HD, and Oulu Health.
Mobile apps and medical devices: Gaetano CAFEIRO, Board member of EHTEL, introduced Kelyon an international supplier of software medical devices. He outlined the volume of around 50,000 mHealth apps available worldwide; commented on the effects created by the 2021 Medical Devices Regulation(s), and compared and contrasted two different approaches to the market: business to business to consumer (B2B2BC) and business to consumer (B2C).
Two further business-related presentations showed why the two companies had both been successful. Each outlined the nature of their apps, their business models and markets, and how they generate income.
A digital clinic to treat physical health conditions: Today, around 30% of workplace absenteeism is due to people experiencing musculo-skeletal disorders. Boris LEVEQUE and Thomas DAVERGNE presented Axomove, a “digital clinic”, provider of rehabilitation services. One of Axomove’s apps is Axomove therapy, for hospitals and rehabilitation centres and the other is Axomove selfcare, for employees (who are often personnel in large companies or firms covered by insurance schemes).
Digital support to mental health by employers: Pierre-Etienne BIDON introduced his talk by offering an organisational overview of the company, Moka Care, a digital start-up, before introducing its easy-to-use app with its quality content based on sound evidence. He covered too the changing regulatory environment in France and, in Europe, through the 2021 Medical Devices Regulation(s). He especially highlighted how Moka Care considered creating the “right mix” between human and digital support when offering digital support to employees who need mental health support.
Reasons for success: Some basic questions were associated with what kinds of data the two companies’ apps collect and in what kinds of formats. The group discussion, however, especially explored in more depth some contrasting aspects of the two applications, the conditions that apply to them, and the markets they serve. The companies’ reasons for their success included:
- Using a B2B model as a step before approaching the need for reimbursement.
- Looking for the “right mix” between digital and in-person solutions.
- Either opening up to a global market for mHealth or staying with a national market.
Polls and conclusions: Throughout the webinar, there were three live polls. Attendees found the most innovative element of the digital solutions presented in the talk to be their potential for integration.
Readers are encouraged the attendees to record the mHealthHub website among your favourite web sites and to subscribe to the Hub’s newsletter. Please be welcome to the next mHealthHub talks (#11 and #12). News on these next Hub talks will be out soon!