Mobile Health Application
So you want to download the next latest, greatest mobile health application but before you do there are a few things you should know.
Here are some safety tips to practice when you download your first or next mobile health application:
1. Research mobile health application (software programs that perform one or more specific functions) BEFORE you download and install any of them. Recommendation: Use known app websites or trusted sources.
2. Actually READ the End Users License Agreement (EULA) before acknowledgement during installation. Review the privacy & security notice of the mobile health application to verify the application will perform ONLY the functions you approve.
3. Consider installing or using encryption software for your device.
4. Install and activate remote wiping and/or remote disabling on your mobile devices. The remote wipe feature allows you to permanently delete data stored on a lost or stolen mobile device. Remote disabling allows the user to lock stored data on the lost or stolen mobile device, and unlock the data if the device is recovered.
Mobile Health Application & HIPAA
There is something you should know about hand held data trackers, similar to Fitbit. They are not considered medical devices and are not regulated by the FDA.
Why you ask …
Because these devices are purchased and the data is requested by the wearer it is not protected by HIPAA. However, if a healthcare covered entity requests a patient to wear one, collects its data, then the data is protected by HIPAA.
Pew Research Center’s Internet and American Life Project
· 85%% of U.S. Adults own a cell phone, and more than half are smartphone users.
· One-fifth of all smartphone users have downloaded a health app, and half of smartphone users seek health information from their mobile devices.