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Investing time and effort into healthcare software development is both honorable and profitable. In 2022, the global digital health market was worth an estimated $334 billion, according to Statista. Moreover, this number is about to grow up to $657 billion in 2025.
But what does it take to develop healthcare software solutions and succeed in today’s competitive market? We at Softermii can answer that question. With many successful healthcare projects in our portfolio, we know what is necessary to create a solution beneficial for a business and the target audience.
One of our most interesting cases is the Locum App – a recruiting platform for the UK client that was designed for web, iOS, and Android devices. The UK pharmaceutical market has its own challenges, such as complex and long-lasting recruiting processes. The innovative solution built by Softermii helped to overcome this challenge by allowing pharmacy owners and pharmacists to find each other quicker and easier via the app.
Read further to learn about the best practices, trends, and challenges in healthcare software development. And if you need any assistance with your project, don’t hesitate to reach out to our team for healthcare software development services.
Types of Healthcare Software You Can Build
The software development in the healthcare industry involves various types of apps. Depending on the target users, they fall into three main categories: medical providers, patients, and administration. Let’s look at each in more detail.
Apps for medical providers
These solutions boost the efficiency of medical workers and organizations. They help medical providers optimize their workflow and provide better patient care. For instance, these apps may serve the following purposes:
- Medicine reference
- Remote patient monitoring
- Appointments management
- EHR (electronic health records) and ERP (electronic medical records) systems
Apps for patients
With these applications, people manage their health and improve their quality of life. Such solutions can be hospital-related or focus on other things like taking up new healthy habits. They may cover the following aspects:
- Appointment scheduling
- Mental health
- Women’s health
- Fitness and wellness
- Habit tracking
Apps for administration
These apps aim to optimize the workflow for medical staff, facilitating the administrative management processes. Here are the most widespread applications for such medical solutions:
- Inventory management
- EHR (electronic health records) and ERP (electronic medical records) systems
- Practice management
As you can see, software development in healthcare may serve various purposes. You can easily pick the one that suits your business goals best, be it a medical scheduling app or a habit tracker.
Benefits of Healthcare Software Development
The proliferation of technology in healthcare has introduced countless opportunities to improve and innovate how healthcare services are delivered. The development of specialized healthcare software not only transforms the medical industry but also creates multiple avenues for stakeholders to enhance care delivery, improve patient outcomes, and reduce overall costs. Here’s a list of most prominent benefits of healthcare software development:
One of the most distinct advantages of healthcare software development is its ability to streamline processes and enhance productivity. Software solutions can automate administrative tasks, reduce paperwork, and allow healthcare professionals to spend more time with patients rather than on administrative tasks.
Enhanced Patient Care
Healthcare software can significantly improve the quality of patient care. It provides a comprehensive view of a patient's history, enabling medical professionals to make informed decisions based on precise and up-to-date information. These solutions can also facilitate communication between patients and their healthcare providers, improving the overall experience and ensuring consistent care.
Data Management and Security
Effective data management is a key benefit of healthcare software development. Healthcare software solutions offer secure storage and easy retrieval of patient data, enabling seamless information flow across various departments. Additionally, with stringent security protocols, these software applications help maintain data privacy and meet regulatory compliances like HIPAA.
By improving efficiency and reducing errors, healthcare software solutions can greatly reduce costs associated with healthcare delivery. They can streamline resource allocation, minimize wastage, and promote more efficient utilization of resources. Automated billing and insurance claim processing can minimize revenue leakage and improve financial management.
Remote Patient Monitoring
Healthcare software development has made remote patient monitoring a reality in today's digital age. It is incredibly beneficial for chronic disease management, post-operative care, and elderly care. Patients can receive medical attention from the comfort of their homes, reducing unnecessary hospital visits and associated costs.
Research and Development
Lastly, healthcare software development contributes significantly to medical research and development. Data collected through this software can be analyzed to identify patterns and trends, enabling predictive analysis, better treatment strategies, and ultimately driving medical advancements.
Trends and Technologies in Healthcare Software Development
Following the latest trends and technologies is critical for every niche, and software development for healthcare is no exception. This way, you will keep up with your competitors and provide more relevant solutions for today’s turbulent and innovative market.
Here are some latest trends, including modern technologies used for healthcare software development.
This technology uses distributed databases and enables safer digital data storage. Thanks to blockchain in healthcare, medical organizations share patient data more securely and integrate with multiple EHR systems. Also, you can create decentralized portals for the patients so that they can control and manage their data.
2. AR and VR
Medical institutions and patients can use Augmented Reality (AR) and Virtual Reality (VR) technologies in many ways. For instance, augmented reality in healthcare improves diagnostics and makes medical procedures more effective with body maps. Conversely, VR applies to mental health treatments since virtual environments can overcome particular phobias. It’s also possible to adopt this technology for pain management (for example, distract patients with virtual games). Also, virtual reality could make visiting hospitals more comfortable. Read Softermii’s article on virtual care software development to learn more.
This technology has become extremely helpful during the COVID-19 pandemic. It offers numerous advantages, from sparing the resources of medical organizations to generally making medicine more affordable. In particular, telemedicine gives people worldwide access to the required healthcare specialists. That’s why telemedicine trends are worth considering when developing medical software.
Such technologies enable analyzing natural language content from audio, text, images, and other sources. For example, NLP in healthcare helps process and structure complex unsorted medical data (such as physicians’ notes). This information may contain valuable insights into patients’ observations and, therefore, improve the treatment processes.
Read Softermii’s recent article on healthcare technology trends to learn more about the latest innovations in the niche.
Key Considerations for Healthcare Software Development Projects
Before working on healthcare software development, make all the necessary preparations. Create a clear vision of the solution you want to build and set realistic expectations. This way, you will achieve the desired result and deliver your application to the market on time.
Here are the primary aspects to consider when developing medical software.
Define the Scope of the Project
The project’s scope is one of the essential factors affecting the final price and delivery date. To determine it, pay attention to the number of features and platforms of your future healthcare software.
To figure it out, define your target audience and thoroughly research your users’ needs. Find out if they already have a tool that solves some of their problems, whether they like it, and what improvements they require. Thus, you will understand other apps’ issues and offer a more efficient solution.
Choose the Right Technology Stack
Companies offering healthcare software development have different tech stacks. The choice depends on the app’s requirements and features.
For instance, Softermii has built a telemedicine video conferencing app using React JS, ASP.NET Core, PostgreSQL, Swift, Kotlin, and WebRTC. And for the mobile app for healthcare providers, our team used PostgreSQL, our own custom-made engine VidRTC, Swift, and Kotlin. Note that you can also use medical APIs to develop medical software much faster.
Picking the right technologies for a platform can be challenging, mainly if you’ve never dealt with hospital software development before. That’s why you may need to consult professionals and use their expertise to select the most relevant technologies for your project. Softermii’s specialists can lend you a hand. Reach out to us if you have any questions.
Set Realistic Timelines and Budgets
The average cost of building a healthcare app starts at $55,000 and can go up to $300,000 and beyond. As for the timeline, it may take 1-3 months to create a basic app. In contrast, developing a complex solution takes 5-8 months.
All in all, it’s pretty challenging to estimate the exact timeline and cost without knowing the details of a project. For example, how many features do you plan to implement into medical software? Does it require ongoing support after the launch? All these factors affect the development budget and duration.
Select the Right Development Team
There are many ways to obtain skilled software developers. You could hire in-house professionals or freelancers. Besides, you may turn to outstaffing and outsourcing agencies for help. Each option has its pros and cons.
To make the right choice, evaluate your business needs and plans. For instance, if you’re going to create several projects in this niche, consider hiring in-house employees. On the other hand, it's much easier and cost-efficient to opt for a dedicated team of outsourced developers for one-time projects.
Establish Clear Communication Channels
A clear set of communication channels benefits you and your team. The team knows where to find all the necessary information, while you can track their communication and the project’s progress.
It’s also worth encouraging feedback exchange when the project starts. Thus, you and your team will eliminate the miscommunication risk and speed up workflows.
Challenges in Software Development and How to Overcome Them
Just like in any other niche, healthcare software development has its challenges. Learning them prepares for possible pitfalls or eliminates them in the best-case scenario.
Let’s have a more detailed look at the most widespread issues for software development in the medical field.
Lack of Technical Expertise
While this challenge is not exclusive to the healthcare niche, the demand for talented developers in the medical field is one of the highest. You should find skilled professionals with sufficient experience in building digital health products. Unfortunately, this combination is rare to come by.
Luckily, outsourcing the development may come to the rescue. This solution will grant you access to a worldwide pool of talents, expand your range of choices, and save some costs. Foreign experts’ rates may appear much lower than average developers’ salaries in your country.
Data Privacy and Security Concerns
Software development in the medical field often requires complying with strict regulations like FDA, GDPR, and HIPAA. Besides, you may need to follow specific industry rules and security standards. Read about the HIPAA compliance checklist in our blog post.
Medical data is particularly sensitive, so your system should carefully protect it. To achieve that, invest in medical data security and conduct various software checkups to detect potential vulnerabilities.
Some digital health tools may encourage data sharing. For instance, a fitness app may ask a new user to connect their Health account or a smartwatch. When doing so, customers expect their data to remain protected while the app provides more relevant personalized suggestions.
It could cause complications, especially when introducing new versions of the same healthcare software to different platforms. Therefore, it’s critical to ensure smooth integrations, reducing potential delays and downtimes.
Cost of Software Development in Healthcare
As mentioned, the average cost of developing a healthcare app starts at $40,000 and can go as high as $300,000 and above. Here are the most significant factors that affect it:
- Team. It might seem that working with an in-house team is a more cost-savvy solution compared to hiring outsourcing professionals. However, that is only true when your company offers a stable workload. Otherwise, working with international developers at lower rates is a more budget-friendly option.
- Timeline. Healthcare software takes time to build since it requires patient data encryption and third-party app integrations. Also, if you want to obtain a healthcare tool faster, you might need to invest more money due to the urgency.
- Software complexity. This factor depends on the number of needed features, the tech stack, and the design solutions. Indeed, complex healthcare platforms require more time and budget. But such medical apps also offer your target audience more features and capabilities, which makes them a worthy investment.
It usually takes up to six stages to develop a healthcare solution. Below, you can find the estimated duration and price for each step:
Web and Mobile Application Development
Initiating a healthcare app development project involves a crucial first step. During this stage, technical implementation occurs, ranging from the administrative panel to the desired features and technologies in your app, such as video chat or push notifications.
It's essential to understand that incorporating more sophisticated functionalities will result in increased development costs.
Moreover, you need to select your app's platform, either iOS or Android. It is advised to develop cross-platform applications that are compatible with leading operating systems to cater to all user requirements.
Web and mobile app development cost: up to 900 hours, estimated at $27,000.
Outstanding UI/UX design focuses on developing responsive user interfaces and fostering enjoyable user experiences by understanding your target audience. Additionally, a flexible healthcare app design ensures seamless operation on any device, especially for cross-platform apps.
UX/UI design cost: up to 200 hours, estimated at $6,000.
Testing and Quality Assurance
Before launching your healthcare product, thorough testing is vital. Softermii employs a combination of manual and automated testing to guarantee optimal performance and eliminate any flaws.
This process also offers valuable insights into app usage, leading to enhancements in features and user interfaces.
QA cost: up to 200 hours, estimated at $6,000.
A project manager ensures that project milestones are achieved and that the project's scope aligns with your expectations. They also conduct risk assessments to identify potential security threats and keep you informed about the loyalty rewards program development progress.
Project management typically represents 10% to 15% of the overall budget. However, based on our current estimate, it will be around $5,500.
To determine the final cost of developing a healthcare app, refer to the table below:
Healthcare Software Development Cost
Web and mobile development
Testing and quality assurance
Keep in mind that the figures mentioned above are not definitive, as the final cost of creating a healthcare application is subject to numerous factors. These encompass particular functionalities, team structure, timelines, platform selection, and other critical aspects. To receive a more precise estimate, reach out to our team for a free quote.
Best Practices for Healthcare Software Development
You will make the most out of the healthcare software development process and protect yourself from possible pitfalls with the following best practices.
Clearly define the target audience of your product
While this step is essential in any software development process, you should pay extra attention to it when working on software development in medical field. That’s because tools for medical staff significantly differ from apps for administrators in features and technologies.
For instance, if users add and view sensitive patient data with your software, extra security measures like two-factor authentication are critical. At the same time, if you’re building an app for consumers, create a clear audience portrait to personalize their user experience.
Consider enhancing patient engagement with the help of mobile apps
As of 2023, 86.29% of the global population uses smartphones. Therefore, with solutions, your target audience will receive the necessary healthcare data quickly and conveniently.
This approach benefits patients and the medical staff. Customers track their progress and results via such apps. Meanwhile, medical workers obtain valuable data to optimize workflows and improve treatments.
Offer user-centered design
Healthcare software design has certain challenges due to its specifics. First of all, these are issues commonly associated with the industry (like concerns regarding mental or physical pain and other signs of distress). Therefore, it’s essential to ensure a satisfying user experience.
Another crucial thing to keep in mind is inclusivity. Designers should create medical solutions with senior users in mind. It also applies to customers with various impairments (cognitive, auditory, and visual).
Scalability is another critical challenge to address. If your healthcare software solution succeeds, your target audience and its needs will likely grow over time. Thus, it’s vital to design a product capable of scaling up.
Entrusting healthcare software development to a professional team is the easiest way to turn your unique idea into reality. If you’re looking for experts to pick the right tech stack for your solution and build a high-quality tool for your needs, look no further.
Softermii is a software development company with rich expertise in the industry. We’ve built mobile apps and online platforms for healthcare providers from all over the world.
Take a look at the examples of solutions we developed: Infomed Telehealth, MedRealtime, and the HIPAA TelMed app.
InfoMed Telehealth is a telemedicine platform that offers an enhanced user experience for practitioners and their patients. Moreover, the tool also provides access to numerous informational resources, such as articles and podcasts, delivered by InfoMed Telehealth’s partners.
MedRealTime is another telemedicine solution designed by Softermii. Our team implemented a real-time synchronization with a doctors’ calendar, making the booking as smooth as possible. We also optimized the specialists’ workload. With its help, patients see if the chosen doctor is available at a given time. Some other notable features of this medical app are convenient payment options, automated email and smartphone reminders, and a secure HD video-conferencing platform.
HIPAA TelMed is a web-based telemedicine application. When building it, we adopted a relatively new WebRTC technology to offer clients better communication. To make phone and video calls efficient and secure, we implemented numerous security protocols and set up a protective cloud environment. The tool also offers some extra features like document sharing and appointment management.
Affordable rates, vast skill set, and market knowledge make Softermii a reliable tech partner for your project. So don’t hesitate to turn to us. We are ready to discuss your ideas and come up with a development plan tailored to your project requirements.
To Sum Up
Healthcare software development is quite diverse. The niche is broad since it covers medical staff, patients, and administrators. It also includes projects of different scales, from habit-tracking apps to large telemedicine platforms.
Also, remember that data security and protection are essential in healthcare development. Digital health products should comply with a list of regulations (HIPAA, GDPR, FDA, and so on). Therefore, when looking for healthcare software developers, hire experienced professionals familiar with the niche.
Looking for such a team? Consider Softermii! Our experts worked with multiple healthcare projects, developing solutions of different sizes and complexity. Reach out to us if you need affordable and high-quality software development services for your medical solutions.
Frequently Asked Questions
What is the software development life cycle in healthcare?
The healthcare software development life cycle (SDLC) in healthcare involves designing, developing, testing, deploying, and maintaining medical software applications. Such solutions cover regulatory compliance, interoperability, patient safety, user-centric design, data security, and scalability.
Which SDLC model is best for the healthcare industry?
The best SDLC model for healthcare depends on project specifics and organizational preferences. Agile methodologies like Scrum or Kanban are popular due to their flexibility, iterative development, and regular feedback.
How long does it take to develop healthcare software?
It can take 1-3 months to build a basic app and 5-8 months to develop a complex solution.
What are the costs of building a healthcare app?
The average cost of a healthcare development app starts at $55,000 and may reach $300,000 or beyond.
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