Health eGames & Mobile Health Apps: The New Consumer Interface

We are seeing the emergence of Health eGames and Mobile Health Apps as part of the innovative fifth generation of multi-media computer interfaces for consumers that can be used to obtain information and interact with Electronic Health Record (EHR) and Personal Health Record (PHR) systems. Examples of the many multi-media eGames for health that are emerging can be found at Gaming4Health. In turn, a list of some of the many new, easy- to-use mobile Health Apps designed for smartphones and other mobile devices can be found on the COSI Open Health web site.

                                                                         Computer User Interfaces
1st Generation  -  Command Line Prompts
2nd Generation -  Question & Answer Prompts
3rd Generation -   Menus & Option Prompts
4th Generation -   Graphical User Interfaces (GUI)

Mobile Health Apps

The following table provides a list of just a few of the many Health Apps currently now available for smartphones and other mobile health (mHealth) devices for both patients and health care providers.

Health Care Consumer
* Health & Fitness Mobile
* Vaccines & Immunizations
* BMR Calculator
* Blood Alcohol Calculator
* Daily Calorie Calculator
* SugarTracker
Health Care Provider
* Netter's Anatomy
* iPharmacy
* Epocrates Rx
* DoctorCalc
* CellularMD
* Skyscape

Health eGames

The worldwide video gaming industry had hardware and software sales reached $43.5 billion in 2007 and is projected to grow to more than $61 billion by 2012. Today, there are hundreds of consumer focused Health eGames offering an active, multimedia video experience across multiple platforms -  see  The following are just a few selected examples of Health eGames aimed at specific medical conditions or health issues.

* Amazing Food Detective
* Brain Age
* Cancer Re-Mission
* Life & Death in the Age of Malaria
* Dancetown
* Escape From Diab             
* Street Luge
* Wii Fit

Conclusion & Next Steps

Health eGames and Mobile Health Apps are the innovative next generation multi-media computer interfaces many consumers will be using to obtain information,  track their health status, and interact with their Personal Health Record (PHR) systems. Health care providers will also find these interfaces useful to their practice.

The following are some recommendations, and next steps health care consumers and organizations should consider taking with regards to these new interfaces:

  • Research and identify those high quality Health eGames and Mobile Health Apps that match up with your specific health care needs.
  • Consider using some of the many free or open source eGames and Health Apps, many of which have been developed by the government and are in the 'public domain'.
  • Look for Health eGames and Health Apps that can be interfaced to EHR & PHR systems.
  • Recognize that this is a rapidly evolving field with the number of innovative, new solutions growing exponentially.

Visit Open Health News to search and read more about free and open source consumer health information & technology solutions, e.g. Health Apps, Health eGames, PHR Systems, and more.