A new mobile app for the Android and iPhone enables users to interact with the NHS Direct service, checking their symptoms and gaining health advice.
The free app from Mobikats was commissioned by Transform Innovation, digital strategy advisers to NHS Direct, and is expected to reduce pressure on GP surgeries and A&E departments.
All 37 of NHS Direct’s online symptom checkers are featured in the app, including those for colds and flu, sore throats and hay fever. The user answers a set of automatic questions and then the app provides self-care advice, generates a call-back from an NHS Direct Nurse Advisor or suggests a course of action.
The NHS Direct app has clear graphics and a user-friendly interface, and can store care guides for up to 30 days.
The iPhone version was released five days after the Android version, which was
downloaded 1,774 times in between.
Philippe Homsy, a Mobikats director, commented: “The importance of keeping the design of the app simple yet with all the functionality needed by NHS Direct was a key challenge for Mobikats. Users were likely to be stressed when they used it, so we needed to ensure they could access the right information in the shortest time.”
Roger Donald, Associate Director of Multichannel for NHS Direct, said: “The NHS Direct app has been developed in response to the popularity of this new mobile channel and to the specific needs of the growing number of patients who prefer to access health advice online. Patients can access rapid and convenient health advice through the app with the reassurance that the information is from a trusted source.”
Mobikats develops smartphone apps and advises companies on mobile strategies.