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Telemedicine App Development: Features, Costs and Process

The pandemic of COVID-19 has accelerated digital health. As a result, healthcare organizations that want to provide healthcare services for patients from a distance are now focusing on Telemedicine App Development.

According to Statista, the worldwide telemedicine market will be worth $559.52 billion by 2027. As a result, healthcare will unavoidably move online. But what are the advantages of Telemedicine for businesses?

Telemedicine allows doctors and patients to simplify the consultation process and stay in touch at all times. Doctors with private practices no longer need to rent office space, and hospitals can lower readmission rates. Furthermore, each healthcare provider gains a new and robust channel through which to distribute their services. Continue reading to understand how to create a telemedicine app, as well as its pricing and features.

To summarize, the cost of developing a telemedicine app ranges from $20,000 to $250,000. The average cost of developing various types of telehealth apps is:

  • Store-and-forward costs around $20,000 – $40,000 
  • Remote monitoring costs between $25,000 and $100,000 or more.
    • Real-time interactive costs $35,000 – $75,000+

The figures are estimates; the ultimate cost will be determined by the telehealth app’s specifications and functionality.

1. What is Telemedicine?

WHO describes Telemedicine as the “delivery of health care services, where a distance separates patients and providers”. In short, Telemedicine solutions involve using communications technology to link healthcare providers to their patients and each other over great distances. Telemedicine manifests in several ways, all of them centered around data transfer and communications. For example, if your practice consults patients over the phone, you’re already practicing Telemedicine.

In the times of the COVID-19 global pandemic, Telemedicine Software Development became even more relevant and started transforming healthcare to the next stage. The main goal of Telemedicine is to provide patients with quality, cost-effective health services wherever they are. It is precious in remote areas, vulnerable groups, and aging populations.

2. So, How Do Telemedicine Apps Work?

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Patients and doctors must have three items to use Telehealth or Telemedicine App:

  • Camera
  • Microphone
  • Custom software

The software is in charge of linking doctors with patients and storing EHRs. The camera and microphone are used to inspect patients and for voice communication. However, there are various types of telemedicine app development solutions.

Let’s go over the following:

  • Video Conference Online – The most often used sort of telehealth app. It allows clinicians to evaluate patients using their devices’ cameras. Sometimes patients already know what is causing their symptoms and only require confirmation of the diagnosis. Patients can make an online appointment with a doctor on their app.
  • Treatment Suggestions – This category includes patients who already have a treatment plan. Users can SMS their doctors questions about their treatment, such as a medicine schedule. Because text messages do not distract doctors from other clients, they are prioritized. These apps frequently contain a voice call capability for more important questions.
  • Prescription Administration – This type enables patients to obtain medication prescriptions online. The technologies that power telehealth apps save users’ EHRs, allowing clinicians to make prescription decisions based on their medical history. Users merely need to apply for a recipe and wait for this appliance to be submitted. They can then bring a printed prescription to the drugstore or just present it on their gadgets.
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3. Types of Telemedicine Applications

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Up to today, there are 07 major types of Telemedicine applications, each of which comes to solve a specific problem for remote patients:

3.1. Telemedicine Networks

Depending on the economic resources available and the needs of the medical professionals involved, there are different ways to distribute medical data. In the US, many hospitals and clinics use dedicated networks to share information. These can be routed over the Internet or use dedicated data lines. There are hundreds of such networks operating in the US today, linking thousands of healthcare facilities.

3.2. Real-time Telemedicine

Real-time Telemedicine, a.k.a live Telemedicine, makes it easy to do a doctor-patient visit anytime, anywhere. Live Telemedicine includes any two-way communications – including video conferencing and phone consultations that let providers and patients communicate in real-time. Assessments of medical history, basic visual examinations, psychiatric evaluations, and even ophthalmic tests can all be done via real-time Telemedicine.

3.3. “Store-and-Forward” Practices

Store-and-forward Telemedicine makes patient records and medical data more accessible across long distances. All sorts of useful medical data (e.g. medical imaging, test results, bio-signals) can be acquired and transmitted across vast distances. The biggest advantage of this type of Telemedicine is that it doesn’t require the simultaneous attention of the delivering and receiving parties. A field technician, caregiver, or specialist can collect the necessary data, upload it, and leave it for a detailed inspection by another provider at a later time.

3.4. Remote Patient Monitoring

Another type of Telemedicine is called remote patient monitoring. Remote patient monitoring allows healthcare providers to monitor patients’ health data from afar, usually while the patient is at their own home. RPM in a Telemedicine App can significantly cut down on the time a patient needs to spend in the hospital, instead letting them recover under monitoring at home.

3.5. Consultation Between Specialists and Primary Caregivers

Telemedicine can improve communication between the members of a medical team. A primary physician can get greater access to a wide range of specialists without requiring any travel. Secure video conferencing platforms make it easy for different professionals to collaborate productively on a given case, with or without the presence of the patient in the communications loop. 

3.6. Medical Imaging

Radiology and other diagnostic specialties deserve special attention in any discussion of Telemedicine. Modern technology has vastly accelerated the rate at which x-rays, CT scans, and other important images are distributed from one medical professional to another. Broadband transmission speeds allow these images to be sent from their point of capture to the physicians and specialists who need them almost instantaneously. 

3.7. Reaching Out To Patients

Thanks to Telemedicine, healthcare professionals have multiple ways to interact with patients in their own homes. Web-based services, such as patient portals, allow providers to share basic information and answer simple questions. More robust connections can let professionals gather data from medical equipment in the home such as pacemakers, fetal heart monitors, and pulmonary systems. Patient portals can be used to recommend health-focused mobile apps or educational materials, such as articles and videos. Patients may even connect with physicians in virtual visits, face-to-face, from their own homes.

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4. Why Build a Telemedicine App?

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We now understand the concept of Telemedicine App Development. What, however, are the advantages of this software for both patients and businesses? Let us focus on each of them individually.

4.1. Healthcare Cost Savings

Businesses that use remote healthcare services do not need to rent office space. As a result, more self-employed and experienced doctors will be able to offer their services. They previously worked for a corporation, but telemedicine app features allow them to become self-sufficient and deliver services independently.

Telemedicine app development can assist more than only self-employed doctors. Clinics get increased consumer flow due to patients not having to wait in lines, and the total consultation procedure becomes speedier. As a result, hospitals may generate more revenue in less time. Furthermore, the study found that telehealth apps lowered typical maintenance expenses by 94%.

4.2. Treatment that saves time

Some doctors work in a traditional hospital, while others may be on leave. A sophisticated health screening could take weeks and hours of commute time; however, not with Telemedicine. A person’s time spent seeking health care through telemedicine apps was cut by 56%.

How do you create a telemedicine platform that saves your customers time? Allow consumers to arrange a doctor’s appointment at a convenient time without leaving their homes. The consultation begins on time, so you can schedule multiple meetings in a sequence.

4.3. Improved Access to Healthcare

According to the NRHA, there is a scarcity of healthcare workers. Telehealth apps can be extremely beneficial to folks who live in remote, rural places. If there are no nearby healthcare facilities, having an app and a cellphone network or WiFi is sufficient. Furthermore, citizens from low-income countries can seek counsel from international physicians. In middle-income countries, for example, approximately 75% of patients with mental problems do not obtain treatment. By giving 24/7 online help via cell phones, mental health app development makes it more manageable and effective.

4.5. Doctors’ Effective Time Management

According to studies, approximately 15% of physicians suffer from burnout and depression. Both self-employed doctors and hospital and clinic personnel can successfully manage their time. Doctors will not miss any appointments thanks to the in-app schedule and push reminders.

Companies may sync CRMs with the software while developing telemedicine apps. This telemedicine software feature extends the usefulness of both administrative personnel and clinicians. Administration can monitor the doctors’ workload to ensure a healthy work-life balance, and doctors can request sick days and shift changes through the app.

4.6. EHR Access Made Simple

Telehealth software stores EHRs (electronic health records) so that doctors can access them whenever they want. A centralized location for a patient’s clinical records saves the doctor time. Patients can also be kept up to date on EHR changes. The only issue is security. Leaks of medical records are unacceptable, and a single error can result in massive fines. We’ll get to the safety concerns later. According to HealthIT.gov, 75% of doctors believe their EHR helps them boost patient engagement by providing better patient care and reducing medication errors.

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5. Telemedicine App Development Core Features

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How do you build a telemedicine platform? You must create a feature list and select tools for telemedicine software development. Any telehealth app should include both a physician and a patient interface. Their feature sets will differ depending on their roles.

5.1. Telemedicine App Features for Patients

Registration, video/voice calls, uploading EHRs, and other functions should be available on the patient side.

  • Registration

First and foremost, there is the sign-in option. Because telemedicine apps hold a lot of personal data, such as EHR, a personal account is essential. Furthermore, it is more convenient to manage appointment schedules in-app rather than remembering them. Patients can sign in using their email address or third-party solutions such as Facebook Login and Google Sign-In. Personal accounts, on the other hand, must be secured, therefore use two-step authentication by SMS or email.

  • Profile Administration

Following registration, a user must create a personal profile. It contains general personal information such as name, gender, and age. The user’s EHR is the most essential piece of information in a profile. Doctors can use it to analyze patients’ health problems and review their previous treatment histories. Keep in mind that this information is confidential and should only be available to doctors and the owner. HIPAA standards restrict unauthorized third-party access to EHR, so take this carefully.

  • Filters and Search

Patients will be able to find the proper providers thanks to search algorithms. Users can search by medical specialty, proximity, language, rating, and other criteria using filters.

  • Conferencing via video

A critical component in the creation of telemedicine apps. The video should be transmitted in the finest quality possible so that the doctor can see any potential traumas or symptoms. The audio should be loud and clear as well. Because each user has a unique internet connection, your software must automatically adapt the video quality to avoid buffering. However, you must maximize the real-time connection as much as feasible. Streaming protocols such as RTMP (Real-Time Messaging Protocol) and WebRTC (Web Real-Time Communication) are excellent examples of telemedicine technology for developing a video conversation.

  • Text Messaging

When video calls are not required, customers can send text messages to physicians. Because text messages do not require a separate consultation, this is an option for resolving small difficulties. Video calls can divert the doctor’s attention away from other patients, whereas text messages can be answered in free time. Attaching photographs and files is a fantastic addition to text conversation. Twilio is a platform for creating live conversations for applications in terms of tools. Twilio has recently become a HIPAA-compliant platform, making it suitable for telemedicine app development.

  • Calendar

The in-app calendar allows patients to track and organize doctor visits. If users need to postpone the consultation, they can do so directly in the calendar while waiting for the doctor’s approval. The Google Calendar API can be used to sync the schedule with Google Calendars. As a result, users will receive notifications from Google Calendar and be able to view the given dates via a widget.

  • Payment Details

A critical component in the development of any telemedicine app. You have the option of using a custom payment provider or a third-party system. In any case, keep security in mind. Before utilizing third-party services, you must undertake research and select a reputable provider. When developing your own payment system, adhere to all current data regulations and security protocols.

Stripe, Braintree, and PayPal are the most popular payment gateways for telemedicine app development options on the market. They enable fast transactions and safe payments. Third-party fees, on the other hand, are the tipping point.

Third-party solutions can typically suit all business requirements. If you want to construct a custom payment system, you need to employ a competent software development company.

  • Rating Systems

Rating systems, reviews, and grades will assist patients in locating a reputable physician. You can create a one-to-five scale similar to Uber. Users can rate the doctor and provide a brief note after their appointment. The client’s health is the first goal of telehealth service, so consider the consequences of unethical doctors. Again, you can take Uber’s lead. If the doctor receives a three or lower, they are asked to improve the quality of their service. If nothing changes after a certain amount of time, the account is blocked.

Customers can also receive grades. If a patient was scheduled for an appointment and does not show up, the doctor may give them one for wasting their time.

  • Notifications

If you’ve opted to abandon Google Calendar sync, you must create notifications for your app. They’ll remind users about appointments and keep your app up to date. Firebase Cloud Messaging is a technology that allows you to deliver notifications from your server to the devices of your customers.

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5.2. Telemedicine App Features for Doctors

Some telemedicine app functionalities are also available on the doctor’s side. Some are comparable to the patient’s side, while others are not.

  • Doctor Profile

Doctors must specify their expertise, medical competence, experience, and other information here. The more information doctors reveal about themselves, the more credible they seem in the eyes of their patients.

  • Calendar Administration

You can offer the doctor an admin role in the patient’s calendar using telehealth technology tools. This makes it easy for doctors to fit the appointment into their calendars. Plus, the client will have one less problem to deal with. If a patient needs to reschedule a consultation, they can submit a request to their doctor.

  • Examining EHRs

Doctors, unlike patients, should be able to look at their patients’ EHRs. Make certain that doctors are unable to download EHRs from your database. If they misplace the phone containing this critical information, both of you will be punished.

  • Communication

Telehealth app development necessitates two-way contact between the patient and the doctor. Doctors should be able to text patients to inquire about their therapy and overall health. If a patient requires a scheduled physical examination, the physician should be allowed to schedule visits independently of the client.

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6. Technologies Used in Telemedicine / Telehealth App Development

As can be seen, there are numerous telemedicine app functionalities to be developed. But what is the technology underlying telehealth, and how can you improve your app? The bulk of current development trends can be useful during the building of telehealth apps. Artificial intelligence, the Internet of Things, cloud computing, and other technologies can be applied to your project. Let’s take a quick look at these usage cases.

6.1. Artificial Intelligence (AI)

Chatbots are the most promising AI application in Telemedicine. Doctors are obviously not always available. A simple FAQ chatbot can answer users’ questions regarding the doctor’s availability, competence, and other topics. Chatbots can even book a consultation for a patient who doesn’t have any explicit requirements. Chatbots cannot, of course, prescribe medications or create treatment plans, but they can automate some mundane operations and streamline the doctor’s workflow.

6.2. IoT

Another example of telehealth technology is the Internet of Things. Doctors can monitor a patient’s condition and receive emergency notifications using wearables. Fitness trackers, stress meters, scales, and other devices enable clinicians to collect patient health statistics and change treatment programs based on the data. Smart medicine dispensers enable doctors to schedule pills without consulting the patient. When it’s time to take pills, a dispenser will send notifications to the user’s phone.

6.3. Cloud storage

When it comes to storing all of the collected data, you have two options: cloud vs. on-premise. With an on-premise solution, you must rent a server room, purchase gear, and construct a fault-tolerant network. Eventually, you will have storage that you can manipulate and scale as needed. However, the costs are far higher than they would be with cloud storage.

A gigabit of storage with Amazon S3 costs $0,022 per month. Even if the cost varies depending on your location and the amount of space you require, it is still substantially less expensive than renting and operating your own servers. Furthermore, you do not have to create a security system from the start. Everything was created by Amazon for you.

6.4. Blockchain

Patients and doctors can communicate data in a safe encrypted way thanks to blockchain technology. Given the sensitivity of the data, blockchain becomes a solution to the question of how to make telemedicine software more secure. Healthcare professionals are actively focusing on health information exchanges over distributed networks in order to seamlessly transfer patient data.

6.5. Big Data

A vast volume of data is generated and processed by healthcare organizations. Big data allows healthcare facilities to collect and analyze EHRs (electronic healthcare records). The information acquired can be utilized to improve patient care, give more accurate diagnoses, conduct medical research, and lower healthcare expenditures. Furthermore, Big Data analytics tools can be used to determine the correct dose of medications and develop unique treatment regimens for remote patients.

6.6. Deep Learning

Deep Learning integration helps the telemedicine software to get insights from enormous amounts of medical data. This technology aids decision-making and enables healthcare providers to make more accurate forecasts about their patient’s well-being.

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7. Telemedicine App Development Cost

The cost of developing a telemedicine app is between $75,000 and $250,000. The cost is determined by several aspects, including the type of application, its complexity, the type of team, its technical level, and its location.

We’ll examine three pricing options based on the type of application, team type, and team location. As an example, consider the cost of developing an MVP that requires 1,500 development hours.

7.1. Telemedicine App Development Cost by Team

Development Team Average Cost in $
In House Team 170,000
Nearshore & Onshore Development Companies (US) 250,000
Freelancers 40,000
Offshore Outsourcing Companies (Vietnam) 20,000 – 75,000

We’ll look at the most common forms of teams, presuming the telemedicine app development project is completed entirely under one roof.

7.2. Telemedicine App Development Cost by Location

Location Average Cost in $
Australia 150,000
The USA 250,000
The UK 180,000
Western EU 160,000
Eastern EU 75,000
Southeast Asia 20,000

We investigate the most appropriate regions for founding startups or outsourcing app development.

7.3. Telemedicine App Development Cost by Type

Type of Telemedicine / Telehealth App Average Cost in $
Store-and-forward 20,000 – 40,000
Remote Monitoring 25,000 – 100,000
Real-Time Interactive 35,000 – 75,000

Asynchronous (or store-and-forward), remote (or passive), and real-time (or interactive) are the three most common forms of telemedicine software. Let’s use them as a starting point to estimate how much it would cost to create various types of telemedicine apps.

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8. Monetization Strategies for Telehealth Apps

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Insufficient funding will ensure the short lifespan of any app. The most effective methods of making money off of creating telemedicine apps need to be discussed.

8.1. Freemium

Using a freemium model, the business provides some of its most fundamental offerings at no cost to users. However, a paid membership unlocks the app’s full potential. Customers who paid for the premium version effectively subsidize those who utilize the free version. The more people who utilize the free version, the more people will eventually sign up to pay for it.

When it comes to health and fitness apps, Fitbit is an excellent example because it provides a free version of its software. Even though it isn’t technically medical software, this app’s premium membership does offer helpful information on fitness and health.

8.2. Subscription

Payments to the app’s developer can be expected on a regular schedule, such as monthly, using a subscription business model. In this arrangement, consumers must pay for access to the app whether or not they use it.

Doxy.me serves as an excellent case study for how to implement a subscription business in a telemedicine app. You might follow the lead of Doxy.me and just charge medical facilities for your services. Alternatively, you might require fees from both doctors and patients.

8.3. Fees

This is by far the most common and lucrative way to monetize a telemedicine app. After each patient-to-doctor transaction, the app will take a cut. This business strategy helped Teladoc become the telemedicine industry leader in terms of cost. The services provided by Teladoc, a business-to-business software, are purchased by companies on behalf of their employees. Teladoc, therefore, charges companies for collaborating with their staff in addition to transaction fees.

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9. Step-by-Step on How to Make a Telemedicine App

A telemedicine app for your company is the next logical step. Because of the direct impact on people’s health, developing this kind of app comes with a heavy burden of responsibility and calls for some forethought. We’ve broken this down into manageable chunks and will now go over each component individually.

Step 01: Pick Your Device or OS

Careful investigation will reveal which distribution channels are best for your product. Therefore, if your target market is Android-centric, you can release a Minimum Viable Product (MVP) there first and worry about iOS later. Having your app available on both platforms is a best practice. Reaching twice as many people will cost you twice as much as a single-platform project, but it will be worth it.

Step 02: Choose Your Design

Despite having a great idea for an app, many startups fail because the UI/UX design is poorly executed. Just be yourself, and your customers will come to you. Instead, you should make your Telemedicine app as simple as possible to avoid confusing your users. The consultation is what matters most to both the healthcare provider and the patient, not learning the ins and outs of your app.

Step 03: API Selection

The following are some examples of widely used APIs from outside sources that can be incorporated into your app:

  1. VSee Software Development Kit. It enables you to build telehealth apps for both iOS and Android with end-to-end encrypted video calls. Since the service already includes a built-in server and client, there’s no need to supply a separate server-client pair to make it work within HIPAA regulations.
  2. Vidyo. As a result of this telemedicine API, doctors can have live conversations with their patients. Since it has its own in-built chat feature, it doesn’t need a dedicated text chat API. In addition, group video calls can be held, and the screen can be shared. There isn’t much room for personalization, though.
  3. Twilio. Regardless of the browser or mobile platform, Twilio’s video API can be used. It offers a variety of APIs that can be integrated into your telehealth app, such as ones for texting, calling, chatting, emailing, and faxing.

Step 04: Development

In this phase, we build the app according to the specifications that have been approved. When developing a telehealth app, you have the option of either releasing a minimum viable product (MVP) with a subset of features to cut down on development time and launch costs or releasing a fully-featured telemedicine platform all at once and incurring those costs.

Developing a minimum viable product (MVP) is a great first step because it can help you gain users’ attention and shield your company from financial harm.

Step 05: Perform Quality Control and Testing

It’s crucial at this point to test your product thoroughly and fix any bugs you find. The unit tests on various devices are performed by the QA team after the development team has completed the peer code reviews.

However, the right way to set up QA is to test after each sprint and then plan for final testing that takes care of everything you’ve tested so far. Before releasing your telemedicine app to the public, you should first ensure it can handle a large number of simultaneous users by conducting stress tests.

Step 06: Implementation and Upkeep

Once the preceding steps have been completed, the application is ready for deployment on the servers and submission to the app store. Each year, enhancements are made to the IOS and Android operating systems. That’s why it’s so important to keep a telehealth app up-to-date so it can keep providing the best possible service to its users.

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Since a telemedicine app includes quite some complex features, developers prefer using the top technologies to enhance their performance.

  • Artificial Intelligence (AI): Chatbots are extremely useful for a telemedicine app. They can handle simple FAQs to booking consultations for the users. 
  • Internet of Things (IoT): IoT allows better connection and monitoring between a doctor and their patients. If permitted, the doctor can track their patient's medical records via different equipment, adding to the treatment plan. 
  • Cloud storage: Storing your data on cloud is much less expensive and far easier than operating your own server. 
  • Big Data: Big data allows healthcare facilities to collect and analyze EHRs (electronic healthcare records) to give more accurate diagnose. 
  • Deep learning: The technology provides telemedicine app insights from a massive data pool and aids decision-making and enables healthcare providers to make more accurate forecasts about their patient's well-being.
  • Blockchain: Patients' sensitive data is well-secured thanks to blockchain. 

Developing a telemedicine app may set you back from $75,000 to $250,000.

For a better understanding, let's examine the pricing options based on the type of application, team-based, and location-based. For an MVP requiring 1,500 working hours, here's how much you will pay. 

1. Cost by Team

  • In-house team - $170,000
  • Nearshore & Onshore Development Companies (US) - $250,000
  • Freelancers - $40,000
  • Offshore Outsourcing Companies (Vietnam) - $20,000 to $75,000

2. Cost by Location

  • Australia - $150,000
  • USA - $250,000
  • Western Europe - $160,000 to $180,000
  • Eastern Europe - $75,000
  • Southeast Asia - $25,000

3. Cost by Type

  • Store-and-Forward - $20,000 to $40,000
  • Remote monitoring - $25,000 to $100,000
  • Real-time interactive - $35,000 to $75,000

A telemedicine app may implement one of the following strategies to make money:

  • Freemium: A freemium model is a case certain app features are available to users at no cost, yet the app's full potential can only be unlocked by a paid membership. 
  • Subscription: This is when a user submits payments to the app's owner on a regular schedule, using a subscription business model.
  • Fees: Paying for fee charges are the most common way telemedicine apps monetize. Briefly explain, after each patient-to-doctor transaction, the app will take a cut from there. 

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The Ultimate Guide On Telemedicine Software Development In 2023

People’s consumption of healthcare services has been influenced by post-pandemic realities. After experiencing the benefits of the remote format, according to Mckinsey, more than 40% of surveyed consumers said they would continue to use telehealth after the lockdowns. Thus, telemedicine software development is an excellent investment.

Furthermore, global circumstances increase the demand for online healthcare services. Telehealth websites and mobile apps are beneficial for modern people. Instead of scheduling an appointment with a doctor, waiting in a long line, or risking exposure, they can schedule an appointment with a therapist and receive care in a few clicks.

Telemedicine software solutions will also benefit doctors and hospitals. Private medical practitioners will no longer need to rent office space, and healthcare facilities will be able to reduce the number of hospitalizations. Furthermore, both parties gain a powerful channel for distributing their services.

However, telemedicine software has unique characteristics that you should be aware of. So here’s a comprehensive guide to developing telehealth software. We’ll review how to build a telemedicine platform, key features, and monetization strategies.

1. So, What is Telemedicine?

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Instead of in-person visits, Telemedicine uses electronic communication technologies and software to track and treat patients. Simply put, Telemedicine is a method of providing medical care to patients over the internet. Its primary goal is to offer people on-demand access to various medical services while reducing doctors’ workload. Telehealth or Telemedicine software solutions allow patients to contact their doctors from afar at any time, and healthcare practitioners can better manage their resources and attract new patients without incurring high costs.

1.2. Overview of the Telemedicine Market

The telemedicine market is currently at its peak of success, with many optimistic predictions. In 2021, the global telemedicine market was worth $72.7 billion, and it is expected to grow to $168.4 billion by 2026. The reason for this is that virtual care delivery is a reaction to social distancing demands that have been implemented in many countries. Furthermore, Telemedicine enables healthcare providers to communicate with patients more effectively and provide better solutions to their health concerns.

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1.3. Technologies Behind Telehealth / Telemedicine Software

  • Conferencing via video – Sometimes, patients already know what their symptoms mean and want the diagnosis confirmed. Users can receive virtual consultations via the camera of mobile devices, desktop computers, or web applications, thanks to advances in audiovisual technology. Instead of standing in line, they can schedule an online consultation with a doctor.
  • Store-and-Forward – This functionality allows recording, storing, and transmitting patients’ medical records to various healthcare professionals at another location to create a treatment plan without requiring an in-person visit. It’s also great to examine visible symptoms like bruises using photos.
  • RPM – Remote patient monitoring (RPM) refers to using cloud computing technology to collect patient-generated data and transmit it to doctors. RPM solutions aim to detect symptoms early and provide medical assistance to patients remotely.

2. Strategies for Monetization

Without funding, no project idea will last long. The most common method of monetizing your platform is to charge patients a fee each time they pay for a visit. The cost of a consultation will vary depending on its length and the doctors’ specialties. For example, the Doctor on Demand service deducts 25% from transition fees, and patients pay $75 for a 15-minute consultation with a physician. When it comes to medical establishments, it is common practice to take a certain percentage to hospitals each month for each employee who uses the software. Again, the Doctor on Demand platform charges a monthly fee of $1 per specialist.

Other revenue models for telehealth software development are listed below.

  • Annual subscription – Patients pay a yearly fee and are charged for any medical care they receive.
  • Monthly charge – According to this model, patients and providers pay monthly fees to use the software.
  • Franchising – If your market is saturated, consider shifting your emphasis and franchising your system to other countries.
  • A fee per minute – This approach necessitates charging patients a per-minute fee for doctor consultations.

3. Telemedicine Technology Trends

The majority of current development trends can be beneficial to the development of telehealth software. Artificial intelligence, the Internet of Things, Big Data, and other technologies will help improve healthcare delivery. Let’s take a quick look at the most popular technological solutions.

  • Artificial Intelligence –  AI-powered chatbots are designed to provide patients with immediate care. They can consult with patients about their symptoms and send the record to their doctors for treatment planning if necessary. Chatbots can also answer questions about physician schedules, competency, and other topics. According to research from Accenture, hospitals using AI-based apps can save around $150 billion annually.
  • Internet of Things – Connecting IoT sensors to various mobile devices will improve health condition monitoring, diagnosis, prescription adherence, and more. Patients, for example, can track temperature, blood pressure, heart rate, and other attributes using wearables and other medical devices and send the results to their therapists for further analysis.
  • Augmented Reality (AR) – AR technology will allow for the multidimensional visualization of healthcare data. For example, detecting disease using image recognition can assist doctors in diagnosing patients with real-time screening analysis that is as accurate as expert analysis.

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4. Types Of Telemedicine Software?

The primary goal of telemedicine software development is to provide an appropriate environment for physician-patient relationships. Telehealth software solutions are commonly classified into four types:

  • Urgent care on demand – Digitalization benefits emergency care the most. According to studies from Mckinsey, approximately 20% of emergency care provided in healthcare facilities can be delivered online. To build a custom telemedicine app of this type, you’ll need to include video and audio support, Google calendar integration, schedule-related features, document management, and EHR integration.
  • Care that is pre-planned – This type is used for a patient checkup following an in-person visit. The doctor treats the patient in accordance with their treatment plan. If users have treatment-related questions, they can send text or voice messages to the physician (e.g., drug schedule, result monitoring, etc.).
  • Mental assistance – These days, such software is gaining popularity because many people suffer from physical and psychological exhaustion. They enable you to provide mental health services to users in the comfort of their own homes, making them feel safe and secure.
  • Self-care technology – Numerous self-care applications are available, but only a few offer professional support to patients. This software allows users to monitor their health, such as blood pressure, heart rate, oxygen level, or the number of pills they need to take. Such platforms have demonstrated their effectiveness in treating chronic health conditions such as asthma and cardiac failure. Such solutions, however, are linked to IoT devices.
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5. Telehealth Software Development’s Technical Aspects

So, how do you actually create Telemedicine Software? Whatever healthcare solutions you choose, all telehealth platforms include the patient’s and doctor’s perspectives. The features required for each role are listed below.

5.1. Features of Telemedicine Software for Patient Registration

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First and foremost, there is the sign-in feature. Because telemedicine applications contain sensitive information, the registration process should adhere to EHR integration standards and allow for document uploads. Patients can sign up via email, mobile phone, or third-party services like Facebook. To ensure data security, two-step authentication via SMS or email is essential. Furthermore, it is critical to include data privacy agreements that are visible on the main screen.

Profile administration

Following registration, a user should be able to add personal information such as name, age, gender, personal preferences, location, and the ability to synchronize with existing hospital records. The user’s EHR is required information in the profile. This information allows physicians to evaluate a patient’s medical conditions and examine their therapeutic history. Patients can schedule appointments with doctors.

Video conference

This is an essential feature in the development of telemedicine software. Remember that video and audio should be of high quality so doctors can see the symptoms and correctly diagnose the patient. Furthermore, data transfer speed may vary depending on the user’s connection, so your software must adjust the video quality automatically to provide flawless information delivery. RTMP (Real-Time Messaging Protocol) and WebRTC are two streaming protocols that can be used for this purpose (Web Real-Time Communication).

Messaging via text

Minor issues like a runny nose or cough do not necessitate a video call. Instead, patients may text a doctor for advice. This option allows physicians to respond in their spare time without interfering with other patients. Users can also attach photos and files for visual cues. Twilio is an excellent tool for implementing live chat.

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Scheduling

This feature will allow patients to monitor and manage their doctor’s appointments. Users should be able to see the physician’s available time, schedule meetings, and cancel their appointments. Users receive a confirmation email or text message once the appointment is approved. If you’re creating a telemedicine app, use the Google Calendar API to integrate Google Calendar. As a result, patients can reschedule meetings and see the doctor’s available time slots directly on the calendar.

Notifications

Aside from calendar notifications, users can receive custom notifications for monthly visits, prescription renewals, and physician queries. Furthermore, they will assist you in informing your customers of future updates.

Reviews

Patients should be able to leave feedback about their doctor visits. Include a rating system that allows users to rate the doctor (for example, on a scale of one to five) and leave a comment. Physicians can monitor their performance and, if necessary, improve the quality of their service based on user feedback. Furthermore, reviews from other customers will assist users in making more informed decisions and locating trustworthy specialists.

Payment information

Payment functionality is critical in the development of telemedicine software. Payment methods such as PayPal, Stripe, and Braintree can be integrated, as can custom payment services or third-party services such as MasterCard or Visa. The primary advantage of payment gateways over third-party providers is that they handle fast, secure transactions and are simple to implement. Suppose you want to create a custom system service. In that case, you must adhere to the most recent data regulation and security protocol. In this case, working with a professional software development company is preferable.

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5.2. Features of Telemedicine Software for Doctors

Some telemedicine app features are also available on the doctor’s side. Some are similar to the patient’s side, while others are not. Let us now consider what features should be implemented by the physician. Some functions are identical to those on the user side, while others are distinct.

Profile of a Doctor

Physicians must also create a profile, including their specialization, qualifications, experience, and other information. Client rates and reviews, as well as shifts, should be included in the profile.

Electronic Health Records (EHRs)

Before meeting with patients, doctors must be granted access to the patient’s EHR. As a result, they can accurately diagnose their clients’ health conditions. Make sure that physicians cannot download medical files from your database. Both of you will be fined if your phone contains sensitive information.

Communication

The development of telehealth software necessitates two-way communication between patients and physicians. Doctors should also be able to text or call patients to inquire about test results, treatment progress, or general well-being. If a planned physical examination is required, the doctor should be allowed to schedule an appointment with the client on their own.w

Exchange of internal data

The doctors may have to refer their patients to a different specialist. They should be able to exchange client information between departments in this case. Your job is to ensure that internal data exchange runs smoothly and securely.

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6. What Are Telemedicine Software’s Advantages?

Patients, doctors, and healthcare providers all benefit from telemedicine software. The most common reasons for incorporating telehealth software development are accessibility and seamless delivery of healthcare services. Consider the primary benefits that each party can obtain from your software.

6.1. Advantages for Patient’s Convenience

Patients receive high-quality care at their preferred location. It means there’s no need to make an appointment ahead of time, waste time on the road, or stand in long lines. It is crucial for people living in remote areas without nearby healthcare facilities.

Accessibility

People worldwide can now access healthcare services anytime, from remote-controlled medical robots used to simplify surgery to more basic healthcare apps used to monitor blood pressure. Going even more profound, some healthcare technological solutions will be able to educate people on best practices.

Service cost savings

Telemedicine solutions are less expensive than traditional methods of care. During the COVID-19 pandemic, healthcare providers were compelled to offer packages that included various telehealth services to provide immediate medical care at a reasonable cost.

Increased Revenue for Healthcare Providers

Video meetings save time and money over in-person meetings. Healthcare facilities can save money on rent, administrative costs, sourcing suppliers, and hiring personnel. Furthermore, the study found that telehealth applications cut maintenance costs by 94% on average. Hospitals, on the other hand, will see increased client flow due to patient reduction, allowing them to earn money in the short term.

Improved cross-team collaboration

As telemedicine software is updated, healthcare practitioners can learn new processes and gain sophisticated skills to manage telehealth systems effectively. Furthermore, this intention may encourage employees to attend specialized courses, resulting in improved team collaboration in the future. In fact, personnel miscommunication is responsible for approximately 80% of errors. A well-educated and strong team will assist healthcare institutions in making the most of telemedicine software, thereby improving patient care.

Fewer visits canceled

It irritates clinic staff when patients fail to attend scheduled meetings or cancel or reschedule them at the last minute. According to research, such appointment cancellations cost healthcare providers more than $150 billion annually. Telemedicine software development allows physical meetings to be replaced with virtual ones. Patients’ cancellations will be communicated to doctors via push notifications or in-app calendar notifications. As a result, they can consult with more people without wasting time.

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6.2. Advantages for Doctors Effective time management

According to research, more than 15% of physicians experience work burnout. With in-app schedules and push notifications, better time management and work-life balance will be possible. With a single click, doctors can change their schedules, browse their patients’ medical histories, schedule meetings, and apply for sick days. It will lead to more thorough patient examinations and prescribed care.

Keeping medical records

Doctors can effectively access and store patients’ EHR with custom telemedicine software. It’s difficult to find clients’ records or hand them to other specialists for accurate medical prescriptions in a traditional hospital. Digital solutions will ensure continuous data access and transmission.

Paperwork administration

Healthcare solutions are helpful not only for medical issues but also for automating administrative processes in businesses. Because most back-office functions will be automated, there will be no need to fill out various forms and internal documentation. Breaking down this inefficiency will result in increased profits and better treatment.

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7. Challenges In Telemedicine Software Development

As you may have noticed, telehealth software development provides significant advantages to users. However, there are some details you should be aware of, and let’s take a closer look at each.

7.1. Security

First and foremost, you must implement all security measures to safeguard personal user data. For this purpose, you can use various telemedicine tools, protocols, and algorithms. Here are some key points to think about:

  • Maintain conformity – Ensure that your telemedicine platform meets all regulatory standards, which we’ll review below.
  • Encryption – Encrypt your data to lessen the impact of careless data loss and cyber-attacks. AES 128 Bit and SHA 256 are the most widely used standards for telehealth app development.
  • Self-assessment – To ensure complete data security, perform self-examination and look for vulnerabilities whenever software is upgraded.
  • Patient education is essential – Patients should also be aware of data security standards and include strong passwords, virus protection, and firewalls on medical consultation devices where applicable.

7.2. Compliance with Regulations

Telehealth software solutions must be implemented in accordance with specific regulatory and medical standards because they process personal patient data. These rules are designed to safeguard critical information and prevent cybersecurity breaches in real-time.

Here is a list of country-specific standards with which your telemedicine software must comply.

  • HIPAA (United States)
  • PIPEDA (Canada)
  • IEC 62304 (international)
  • DICOM (international standard to manage medical imaging data)
  • ICD-10 (international classifications of disease)
  • Directive 95/46/EC on Data Protection (Europe)

Your medical application should also meet FHIR and OWASP standards. Furthermore, secure messaging and encrypted data transmission protocols must be used to transfer patients’ EHRs and EMRs within and outside healthcare organizations.

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7.3. Video High Definition

Full HD video is critical in the event of physical harm to patients. Poor video quality can lead to incorrect symptom interpretation and diagnosis. As a result, a good device camera is essential. In some cases, however, invalid code and bandwidth issues may result in poor video quality. Consider an IT vendor who understands how to build a telemedicine system with video chat support and has extensive streaming experience.

8. Process of Developing Telehealth Software

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Because it directly affects people’s health, developing this software requires significant responsibility and careful planning. As a telemedicine software development company with experience in the healthcare industry, we’ll go over the steps you should take to create a user-centric app.

Step 1: Planning

You’ve decided to create your own telehealth platform. However, before you choose the right type, platform, or technologies, define the purpose of your future product. In the case of telemedicine apps, it is a benefit you will provide to your potential users. For example, you may wish to create a healthcare solution that includes powerful video conferencing software to facilitate patient-doctor communication, or you may wish to create pharmacy management software to automate pharmacy-related processes, or you may require an all-in-one solution.

When you’ve identified the problem that needs to be solved, it’s time to look at your main competitors and market leaders. Pay attention to their strengths and, more importantly, weak points to determine what you can do better to attract more leads. The following step is to identify your target audience. Again, careful analysis and research will enable you to segment your audience and develop features that meet their expectations and demonstrate demand. In addition, you must consider high-level integrations (for example, with EHR), collect compliance requirements for relevant regulations such as HIPAA, and determine the software license required.

Step 2: The Discovery Phase

Because clients and software engineers may have different visions of required features, the Discovery phase is critical for telehealth software development. At this point, Business Analysts examine your company’s goals and project concept. They create a project specification that includes information about the product, such as features, design, technology stack, number of third-party integrations, and so on. Finally, after all the data has been analyzed, you will be given a final estimate.

Step 3: User Interface/UX Design

UI/UX designers define the core user scenarios (e.g., video meeting setup, prescription renewal), visualize the main features of telemedicine software, and plan convenient customer journeys for all users involved at this stage. Then, they create an app prototype that shows how the platform will look, and perform and what it can do in the future. Finally, appealing user interface elements are created by designers.

Step 4: Product Development

It is the most critical and challenging aspect of developing a telemedicine platform. It stands for developing the product’s server-side, integrating APIs, and converting an appealing UI design into functional software. It is preferable, to begin with, a minimum viable product (MVP) to test the software concept and launch the app with minimal investment. The core concept of MVP is to create a telemedicine app/software with enough features to attract first users and gather early feedback. Furthermore, once you start making money, you can reinvest in adding advanced features.

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Step 5: Testing

The telemedicine platform cannot be deployed without extensive testing. QA engineers conduct multiple tests at this stage to verify the product’s functional requirements, find and fix potential bugs and malfunctions, and ensure software security and regulatory compliance. The results are then entered into the bug report and transferred to software developers for further correction. Before the final client review, QA engineers ensure that all functionality works as expected and meets project requirements.

Step 6: Delivery & Upkeep

After completing all previous telehealth software development stages, it is time to deliver a finished application to customers and stakeholders for testing and feedback. If necessary, you make improvements based on the information gathered. Due to the complexity of telemedicine solutions, it is preferable to continue working with the dedicated development team. They can keep the software running smoothly by adding new features or improving existing ones, fixing bugs, and providing seamless software performance. Furthermore, system security and standard compliance must be checked regularly.

What Is the Price of Telemedicine Software?

The cost of developing telehealth software varies depending on the type of software, the complexity of the features, the design, the integrations, and the rates of software developers. When all of them are considered, the average cost to build a telemedicine platform will range between $150,000 and $250,000+. Unfortunately, no specialists can give you an exact price until they know what functionality you require and what type of Telemedicine app you want to develop.

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There are 6 steps an experienced telemedicine software development company will follow to ensure the delivery of a reliable and useful healthcare app:

  1. Planning: Define the purpose of your desired product & identify your target audience
  2. Discovery phase: Business analysts examine your business's goals & project concept to create a project specification.
  3. UI/UX design: Define user flows, and features and visualize the app's interface.
  4. Product development: Develop the product's server-side, integrate APIs and convert the UI design into functional software.
  5. Testing: Conduct multiple tests to verify the product's functions and fix bugs.
  6. Delivery & upkeep: Deliver the final app and make improvements if required. 

Telemedicine software's main goal is to provide patients assess to healthcare services and reduce the workloads for doctors. Telemedicine software may follow one of the revenue models below:

  • Consultation session charge - The software charges a patient a fee every time they pay for their consultation.
  • Annual subscription - The patient pays a yearly fee and is charged for the medical services they use.
  • Monthly charge - Patients and providers are charged monthly fees to use the software.
  • Franchising - If your market is saturated, consider franchising your system to other countries.
  • A fee per minute - A patient is charged with a per-minute fee for doctor consultations.

Telemedicine software may bring ample benefits, yet there are some serious concerns regarding its development as well.

Security

Because software like this contains a lot of sensitive information about users, it would require top security methods. 

Compliance with regulations

Asides from an app's security methods, a business needs to be aware of the regulations their app would have to compliant. Here are some of the country-specific standards that telemedicine software may need to comply with: IEC 62304 (international), DICOM (international standard to manage medical imaging data), Directive 95/46/EC on Data Protection (Europe), HIPAA (US), etc.

High definition videos

The video's quality is extremely important to assist doctors in diagnosing their patient's physical symptoms. 

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