Five Things to Consider When Selecting a Health Smartphone App

Monday, March 2nd, 2015

(NC) With thousands of health apps available on our smartphones for almost any health inquiry, the options can be overwhelming.

“Many of my patients use smartphone apps to take charge of their health,” said Dr. Kendall Ho, emergency room physician at Vancouver General Hospital. “It’s important that Canadians understand how to select an app that is both suitable and supportive of their overall health goals.”

Here are some tips that will make it easier for you to choose the best health app for you.

• Your Condition: Apps can be great for many purposes, such as tracking symptoms, managing chronic conditions or measuring fitness goals. Ask your doctor about how you’d like to use an app to ensure it’s a good fit for your condition and wellness goals.

• Ease of Use: Unless it is easy to use, you won’t end up using it. Consider the amount of information you’re required to enter, how often you have to enter it and if calendar reminders are available.

• Effectiveness: Do your research! Reviews from other users can be insightful, especially from someone with the same health condition or goal.

• Privacy: You’ll want the information you enter to remain confidential. It’s critical to research the privacy policies for apps and the companies behind them, and to also understand the privacy settings on your smartphone. Also remember, like any technology, apps can be vulnerable to hacking so consider the information you are giving out.

• Safe: Some apps provide advice that doesn’t reflect your medical history or conditions. A member of your health care team can provide valuable insights on this advice to ensure it’s tailored to you.

For more information on how digital health is making a difference for Canadians, visit betterhealthtogether.ca.

Source: www.newscanada.com

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