WebMD demonstrates an updated version of its mobile health application for the iPhone at the Health 2.0 conference in San Francisco.
a respected online resource for health news and tips, introduced an enhanced
version of its mobile app for the iPhone and iPad on Oct. 8 at the Health 2.0
conference in San Francisco,
according to WebMD company spokesperson Adam Grossberg.
a demonstration, WebMD's CEO Wayne
Gattinella showed how the mobile app can access WebMD's PHR (personal health
record) platform, which is used by many of the largest employers and health
plans in the United States,
demonstrated how WebMD Mobile can store patients' PHRs in a fully personalized
version and include information on pre-existing conditions and
Mobile has been downloaded more than 2 million times and ranks among the top
three health apps on iTunes, according to Grossberg.
can use the app to check symptoms of an illness, find information on
medications, get first aid tips and search for hospitals, physicians and
pharmacies, Grossberg said.
options in WebMD Mobile include Symptom Checker, Condition, Drug &
Treatments, First Aid Information, Local Health Listings and Personal Health
application's My Alerts feature identifies possible conditions based on the
patient's symptoms and medications documented in the patient's health record.
The app then makes determinations based on this information. The app's answers
may provide basic information such as "Ibuprofen may cause abdominal
WebMD Mobile currently runs only on the iPhone and iPad, the company has plans
to launch apps on other smartphone platforms such as BlackBerry and Android,
the WebMD spokesperson said. The mobile app will launch sometime in 2011,
September, WebMD's Medscape site began hosting informational sites that provide
on how to implement electronic health records.
Intel and McKesson
collaborated on that site, along with the public microsite PracticeReadyEHR.com,
which explains how physicians can qualify for stimulus money under the
government's HITECH (Health Information Technology for Economic and Clinical Health Act).
recent health apps launched on mobile devices include tools from health
provider Prematics and the Walgreens chain, which provides text alerts to
customers when their prescriptions are ready for pickup.
is also eyeing the health care industry for applications to incorporate on its
tablet, which will be available in 2011.
Brian T. Horowitz is a freelance technology and health writer as well as a copy editor. Brian has worked on the tech beat since 1996 and covered health care IT and rugged mobile computing for eWEEK since 2010. He has contributed to more than 20 publications, including Computer Shopper, Fast Company, FOXNews.com, More, NYSE Magazine, Parents, ScientificAmerican.com, USA Weekend and Womansday.com, as well as other consumer and trade publications. Brian holds a B.A. from Hofstra University in New York.