The market for home health care technology is poised for tremendous growth; there is no disagreement with that. The aging global population, advances in health care treatments, the move towards in-residence and outpatient care, and the new possibilities created by the Internet of Things (IoT) all synergize together to create incredible opportunities for existing and potential providers of residential healthcare services.
For those intrepid entrepreneurs looking for early success in this space, the question often arises to whether one should create the underlying technology “from scratch” or develop their digitial home health care application around an existing “off the shelf” SaaS (Software as a Service) health care platform. There are a lot of innovative cloud services available from technology infrastructure providers like Amazon, Google, Microsoft, and IBM. Those platforms may make it tempting to “roll your own” solution based on the building blocks that they provide. Perhaps by developing a custom solution, an emerging provider will have more flexibility and end up with a precisely tailored offering.
To use an analogy from recent history, there was a time when most websites were written directly in HTML code. Programmers can still do this today, but most websites uses one of the 3 major content management systems on the market (Drupal, Joomla & Wordpress), which provide powerful, customizable platforms without the user having to start from zero to create new websites or publications. Not only is it easier, but by using these content management systems, the user is leveraging a vast infrastructure of existing users, experts, programmers, and security experts.
Likewise, using an off-the-shelf platform to deploy home health care technologies—especially when integrating the Internet of Things, can result in a more stable, more secure, less expensive and quicker to deploy system than building the application without any underlying proven foundation.
In the vast majority of cases, it is better to focus on developing and supporting your value-added healthcare solution, and invest resources in maximizing patient/customer outcomes, partnering with a digital healthcare platform provider.