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May 2015

Making Mobile Health Measure Up

Author Affiliations
  • 1Department of Dermatology, Massachusetts General Hospital, Boston
  • 2Harvard Medical School, Boston, Massachusetts
  • 3Partners Center for Connected Health, Center for Connected Health, Harvard Medical School, Boston, Massachusetts
JAMA Dermatol. 2015;151(5):481-482. doi:10.1001/jamadermatol.2014.3880

Nearly 50 years ago, Kligman1 challenged our field to produce devices and methodologies that would allow dermatologists to care for patients without need of the human eye. Now, as new smartphone applications (apps) spring up daily and new modalities for remote monitoring offer alternatives for managing aspects of the traditional physician-patient visit, our field has entered a technological exploration phase, fashioning and testing health innovations as predicted by a dermatologic Jules Verne decades ago. This new phase brings with it new research considerations and new questions. A technological intervention study, for example, must face 2 particular questions: how to deliver effective health care within the new media now possible for patient interactions and how to measure that health care delivery effectively.

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