2010 is the Year mHealth and mPayments converge with Medical Banking

At the 2010 Annual HIMSS Conference & Exhibition in Atlanta, March 1-4, HIMSS introduces the new HIMSS Medical Banking Project. A  session entitled Medical Banking: An Emerging Strategy To Improve Global Healthcare will serve as backgrounder. Also, a HIMSS Medical Banking Boot Camp will be offered as introduction to those new to the topic–learn about the emerging role of banks and financial institutions in healthcare including industry trends from building new transaction processing venues, privacy and security issues in banking systems and how banks are advancing pragmatic ways to engage consumers in health and healthcare.

The 8th National Medical Banking Institute will focus on The Healthcare Financial Network of the Future and will feature senior level discussions around the challenges and issues impeding progress and identification of ways–from policy to best practices to technology–that will make this a more efficient and empowering digital ecosystem in the healthcare industry.

The metaphor that John Casillas, the HMBP founder, has used most often is that of the ATM network–which could be used to facilitate the transfer of medical information, both administrative and clinical, to support health-wealth portals. But as enterprise LAN technologies increasingly include the wireless, I think the medbanking metaphor expands and 2010 will see the mostly disparate areas of mHealth and mPayments come together to support “mHSAs”, etc. Will US providers by prepared?

Globally, among other vendors, Vodaphone is promoting mHealth for Development , and Google speaks of SMS health information distribution and payment by text messaging. Apple’s healthcare ecosystem already includes a portal, partners, and phones which enable you to monitor your heart rate, access any number of PHRs, view your DICOM files, purchase mHealth applications, and so on. Apple even sells iTunes stored value cards, works with PayPal, and Apple-Barclay-Juniper [1,2] to make an Apple Rewards Visa Barclaycard available–the kind of cards make nifty HSA funds transfer devices.