A small survey of attendees at last month's HIMSS14 conference found that their greatest worry when it comes to adopting mobile health technologies is the potential for patient data breaches.

The poll, conducted by Phoenix-based data management vendor Axway, revealed that those surveyed see data breaches as the most significant barrier to mHealth adoption, followed by meeting regulatory and compliance requirements for the privacy and security of patient data.

Among the other findings of the survey of health care IT and business professionals:

* 44 percent believe the integration of disparate health IT systems is the most challenging IT issue facing health care organizations,

* 53 percent respond that improved access to health care information is the most important benefit driving mobile health adoption, and

* 38 percent say that the widespread adoption of mobile health services is one to three years away, and nearly 90 percent believe it will occur within five years

In related news, a new study by Grand View Research predicts that by the end of the decade the worldwide mobile health market is expected to grow to $49 billion. The firm pegged the value of the global mHealth market at $1.95 billion in 2012, with projected growth from 2014 to 2020 at a staggering compound annual growth rate of 47.6 percent.

"Per capita health care expenditures have been increasing, which makes medical services unaffordable for a large percentage of the population. As a result, demand for mobile health is expected to increase considerably over the next six years," according to the report. "In addition to smartphone proliferation, uptake of 3G and 4G networks is expected to increase demand for telemedicine services. Aging population and growing incidences of diseases linked to changing lifestyles have intensified the need for affordable and accessible health care."

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