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Revista Costarricense de Salud Pública

Print version ISSN 1409-1429


SANCHEZ LOPEZ, María Asunción; FERNANDEZ ALEMAN, José Luis; TOVAL, Ambrosio  and  CARRILLO DE GEA, Juan Manuel. Smart Phones for the elderly: a review of mobile health applications. Rev. costarric. salud pública [online]. 2015, vol.24, n.1, pp.30-42. ISSN 1409-1429.

Objective: To discover which smartphone applications and functionality are available to the elderlies in the field of health care. Methods: A systematic literature review was conducted to select scientific publications as well as a study of available applications in the mobile applications repositories GooglePlay and AppStore.  Results: Eighteen mobile phone applications with a variety of features were identified. The results show that the applications are focused on a specific disease or field, such as Alzheimer and dementia, diabetes, cardiovascular diseases, respiratory diseases and health management. In addition, the study showed that the majority of the selected applications are neither usable nor adapted to be used by elder adults. Conclusions: Large buttons, simple menus with few options and voice messages replacing text in reminders and confirm dialogs make easier the use of mobile phone applications by the elderly. The design and development of Personal Health Records with functions that cover the comorbidity of elderly people is a promising research area.

Keywords : elderly; mobile phone; health.

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