A 5-Step Guide to Building a Successful Healthcare App in 2024

healthcare app development

Viacheslav Timoschenko

Full-Stack Developer

With continuous technological advancements and digitization, smartphones, and other devices have become a perfect platform for promoting a healthy lifestyle and seeking timely medical attention. Innovative healthcare apps have made it more convenient for patients to track their health progress, access medical care, and manage their appointments, prescriptions, and medical records. Healthcare professionals can now concentrate on providing quality patient care thanks to streamlined workflows and automated manual tasks.

So, it’s no wonder that more and more healthcare vendors and organizations are turning to medical app development companies to create effective and user-friendly applications. In this article, we uncover the development process and best practices for healthcare app development.

icon $240.9 billion

The global digital health market size was estimated at $240.9 billion in 2023.

icon $81.17 billion

The U.S. digital health market size was estimated at $81.17 billion in 2023.

icon $787.1 million

The global healthcare chatbots market was valued at $787.1 million in 2022.

What is Healthcare App Development?

Healthcare app development refers to the process of designing and building web or mobile applications for medical care, fitness, and wellness. Medical software development creates an entire ecosystem where medical professionals can provide better care and patients can receive it more easily.

Healthcare apps are created both for patients and medical professionals. The software helps patients manage their health, monitor diseases, and get the required treatment in a timely manner. Meanwhile, doctors and nurses can use medical apps to manage their workflows more efficiently and provide quality care.

  • Healthcare Apps for Patients:

    • Appointment scheduling and reminder apps;
    • Medication tracking apps;
    • Self-diagnosing apps;
    • Women’s health apps;
    • Telehealth apps;
    • Mental health apps;
    • IoMT (Internet of Medical Things);
    • Fitness and wellness apps.
  • Healthcare Apps for Medical Providers:

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A 5-Step Process for Building a Healthcare App

  1. 1 Planning

    Planning is the first and most crucial step, as it will determine all your subsequent actions and decisions throughout the medical app development process. Meticulous planning and research are also an excellent way to save money on unnecessary features or trying to enter an oversaturated niche. Follow the below listed steps:

    • Identify your future app’s type, desired features, budget, goals, etc. 
    • Determine your target audience, which may include medical professionals, hospital administrative staff, labs, health insurance companies, patients, etc.
    • Conduct comprehensive market research to study your competitors and niche and understand user preferences.
    • Find an open niche you can fill and the existing need you can address. Set clear goals and measurable objectives.
  2. 2 Design

    A functional yet appealing healthcare app design is vital to make your app stand out in a competitive market. Healthcare apps are intended for people of different age groups, with different tech skills, and with different conditions (including people with disabilities). Therefore, UI/UX designers should focus on creating a simple, highly intuitive, and user-friendly design to ensure a smooth user experience. 

    Additionally, remember that medical professionals may need to use the software in high-pressure situations. Create easy-to-understand and easy-to-use navigation and workflows to suit their professional needs. Integrate various features and functionalities to streamline everyday processes, including data entry, prescription management, and appointment scheduling. 

    Partnering with an experienced healthcare software development company will help you create user-centric design and enhance user engagement and satisfaction, bringing success to your app.

  3. 3 Building the Infrastructure

    A scalable and robust infrastructure is the backbone of your healthcare app, ensuring its performance and reliability. Make sure to check the following:

    • Hosting: Select a secure hosting environment that provides backups and disaster recovery plans, such as HIPAA-compliant cloud services.
    • Scalability: To facilitate future scalability in case of potential user and data growth, use load balancing, scalable databases, and caching.
    • Access controls: Limit access to patient data and prevent unauthorized entry by setting up role-based access controls.
    • Data encryption: Secure the data at rest and in transit with strong data encryption (SSL/TLS).
    • Security audits: Ensuring high patient data security and regulatory compliance levels is vital in the medical app domain. Therefore, you must conduct regular vulnerability assessments and security and compliance audits.
  4. 4 Development and Quality Assurance

    Meticulous development and testing ensure the success and seamless operation of your future healthcare app.

    • Skilled development team: Hire software developers with in-depth expertise in the required programming languages, frameworks, databases and extensive experience in healthcare software development.
    • Agile methodology: Adopting agile development methodologies allows the team to break the development process into short sprints for proactive iterations and receive feedback from stakeholders for continuous improvement.
    • Prototyping: Before starting development, build prototypes to visualize the app’s flow and functionality and clarify expectations and requirements.
    • Testing: Thoroughly test your app for security, performance, functionality, and compatibility with different devices using integration testing, unit testing, and user acceptance testing.
    • Bug tracking: Set up a system for tracking and resolving bugs and any issues arising during testing to ensure all bugs are resolved before the app launch. 
    • User training: Prepare training and documentation to help your future users navigate the app and use its full potential in their daily workflows. User training is essential for apps with complex functionality targeting medical professionals. 
  5. 5 Launch and Post-Launch

    The launch of a healthcare app means publishing it on the Apple Store or Google Play Market. Following a comprehensive marketing strategy will help you successfully launch your app, present it to your target audience, and increase user adoption rates. Consider partnering with medical institutions and healthcare practices to promote your application and reach a broader audience.

    However, the work doesn’t stop when the app is released. To stay competitive in the healthcare app landscape, you need to:

    • assess the app performance;
    • provide post-launch maintenance;
    • fix bugs;
    • add new features or update the existing ones;
    • update the app according to user feedback. 

Real-Life Cases of Medical Software Development by Interexy

AcneAway

AcneAway is a telemedicine web app designed to help people worldwide easily connect with a doctor online, get diagnosed, receive needed dermatological treatment, and treat acne during the pandemic and further. The app also has an integrated AI bot helping patients book an appointment, providing a smooth and customized user experience. Our development team used React, Redux, Node.js, and AWS for the tech stack.

Physact

Physact was designed as an easy way to connect patients struggling with depression and doctors in modern digital realities. The idea was to build an app helping patients deal with depression with the help of physiotherapy and under the supervision of their doctors. We created a convenient system consisting of a mobile app for patients combined with a web platform for physicians. For the tech stack, our development team used React, Nest, and AWS.

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FAQs

  1. What is medical software development?

    Medical software development is building web or mobile apps for patients and/or healthcare professionals in the healthcare industry.

  2. How can developers leverage blockchain in medical software?

    There are numerous ways of integrating smart contracts and blockchain technology in healthcare software development, including the development and management of EHR platforms, automating healthcare and insurance payments, and improving drug traceability.

  3. How to choose the best team for software development in the healthcare industry?

    Choosing the right healthcare software development partner is a critical and difficult step in the healthcare app development process. However, there are several factors you need to keep in mind:

    • Check how the company works, its processes and methodologies;
    • Explore the company’s portfolio, its previous clients, and reviews;
    • Check the code and tech stack the company uses;
    • Arrange a call to verify the team’s good soft skills;
    • Consider time zone differences;
    • Make the final decision based on expertise and soft skills.

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