How Online Technology Can Build a Powerful Sense of Well-Being During Pregnancy

Martin Kopp

Online technology can make a pregnancy a more comfortable and stress-free experience for the mother to be. While app-based pregnancy healthcare is not yet common, this is changing. Soon, most women in the Western world who become pregnant will be able to use and enjoy this technology. Here are some of the things we may see when pregnancy apps become the standard way to monitor pregnancy.

How technology aids pregnancy wellness in women

When a woman discovers she is pregnant, she will usually immediately make an appointment with an OB/GYN. With a pregnancy app, rather than coming in frequently for in-person appointments, the woman will use an app downloaded to her phone. The app will be provided by the doctor or clinic where she has her first appointment and usually be part of a wellness program administered by her health insurance.

The app gives the woman the ability to monitor her health during the pregnancy. By entering information into the app and sending it to the doctor, the pregnant woman will reduce the number of in-person appointments she must attend. This not only saves a woman time spent waiting in her OB/GYN’s office, she saves on gas, wear and tear on her car, and the time it takes to get to the office and back. The app is so much more convenient, and it offers the same high standard of care an in-person appointment would provide.

Examples of what the pregnancy app does

Once the pregnant woman downloads the app, she uses it to register with her doctor or clinic. Then, questions posed by the app enable her to keep track of her health data during the pregnancy. The information she enters into the app is stored in the cloud. This makes it accessible everywhere that has Wi-Fi.

Her doctor can log into the app from his or her end and see what the woman enters. Based on the initial examination, the information the pregnant woman puts in the app, and information in her electronic health record, the doctor gets a detailed picture of her health during the pregnancy, allowing him or her predict any risks she might be subject to during the pregnancy.

As an example, the doctor might use information from the app to determine the woman is at a higher than average risk for pregnancy-related diabetes. When the doctor notices this risk, the app will send the pregnant woman a recommendation for an in-person visit. This visit will diagnose any issue with certainty and treat it if necessary. It may also determine there is a risk, but no actual disease.

Along with being able to predict risks associated with the pregnancy, the app can send the woman personalized information. This information will be tailored to her based on her unique needs. The needs are determined by the information she puts in the app. Any pregnancy-related conditions that are found can be monitored through the app. The app can also remind the woman to keep up with any necessary treatment.

As the woman continues to input information in the app, her doctor can monitor trends in her health and make suggestions through the app for improving it or maintaining it. Data collected from the app can also be used anonymously to do clinical research. This benefits all patients in all areas of medicine. It can help more women have healthy pregnancies without needing to see a doctor more than just a few times before the birth.

Apps and personal data security

Because the information that women enter into these apps is stored in the cloud, its protected with state-of-the-art security. Cloud storage companies are some of the most trustworthy and secure companies in technology. They are always up to date on the latest and most effective methods for keeping hackers away. They also make sure only the people who truly need access to the information are able to get it. In most cases, this means the pregnant woman and her doctor. Sometimes, it can mean the doctor’s assistants or other people who work at the clinic. No one else gets a password to access the information unless the patient requests it. This is important for pregnant women, as they want to make sure their personal and health data is as private as it can be in an online environment. With cloud computing companies, it is extremely secure.

Use of apps for pregnancy

While this technology is still new, it is the direction things are going. Soon, an app for remote health monitoring will be standard in the OB/GYN world. It may also be standard in other specialties, too. Insurance companies will design the apps and pay for patients to use them. They will make the apps available to doctors and clinics to give their patients to download. With an app on a smartphone or tablet, a pregnant woman can enter important health information wherever she is, before she forgets to do it. Doctors get information on her health in real time, making any potential issues with the pregnancy easier to recognize and treat in a timely manner. While it is more convenient and inexpensive, it also results in better outcomes for the pregnant woman and her baby, which is the most important benefit of using apps to monitor health during pregnancy. Both the patient and the doctor are more satisfied with the experience of working together in this manner. Because of these things, apps are becoming more common and soon will become standard.

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Martin Kopp

About Martin Kopp

Martin Kopp is the global general manager for Healthcare at SAP. He is responsible for setting the strategy and articulating the vision and direction of SAP's healthcare-provider industry solutions, influencing product development, and fostering executive level relationships key customers, IT influencers, partners, analysts, and media.