Healthcare Web Development in 2024: Everything You Need to Know to Become a Leader on the Market
There are a whopping 6,093 medical clinics in the USA and approximately 165,000 hospitals worldwide. These numbers show just how massive the healthcare infrastructure is. Sure enough, the competition in this market is fierce. To survive, clinics and hospitals are forced to go the extra mile in delivering top-notch services and attracting patients. And, as you can imagine, in this tight race, a quality, customized, and user-centric website is what can tip the scale.
In this article, we’ll look at all the nuances of medical web development, including the different types of medical solutions that can be built, and the costs associated with the process. We’ll also guide you on choosing the best healthcare web development team to help you build a healthcare website that attracts customers like a magnet. Let’s get started!
Why You Need a Medical Website
People don’t want to jump on a phone call head-first. They want to be able to browse through a website late at night or during the lunch break, check services, compare physicians, read reviews and recommendations, make sure their insurance is connected, and only then, maybe – if they decide so – make a call. Though, most would prefer to make an appointment online.
This isn’t just us saying so. The statistics prove this, showing that 71% of patients first research website reviews before they pick up a phone and call a hospital. This highlights the significance of having a website in the realm of modern medicine.
To put it simple, your website is a virtual showroom. It can demonstrate services you provide, your doctor’s qualifications, and interact with people day and night through online assistants. And the smoother it runs, the more people trust you and want to use your services.
However, healthcare website development is much more than just creating a client-bait. Here are some reasons why quality website is something to strive for:
- Seamless, round-the-clock communication. Are you familiar with this anxiety wave that starts with googling symptoms (often at night) and culminates with a search for relevant doctors and procedures in your area? With the help of websites, medical facilities can interact with customers after working hours, answering any urgent questions through AI-powered chatbots, day and night. This way, people don’t feel alone with their problems and can have peace of mind knowing they will get support when they need it.
- Competitive edge. We are not in 2000, so almost all of your competitors already have websites. But are their websites any good? Chances are, they are just static pages with a phone number and a few smiling doctors from a stock pictures platform. Even with a minor investment in healthcare website development, you can gain a competitive edge over more than half of your rivals. Customize, add modern features, boost UX, and you have a good chance to build brand identity that converts into trust.
- An educational resource. There is Healthline, and there is the National Institute of Health. No matter what your clients want to know about health, these websites will be the first “call.” Next on a trust scale are quality articles on medical institution websites. This is your moment to shine. Creating a user-friendly blog that search engines also like is a sure way to attract readers and turn them into clients.
- Efficient appointment management. Online scheduling is not just convenient for patients but also relieves administrative staff and reduces no-shows. With an online appointment system, patients can easily book, reschedule, or cancel appointments, optimizing the use of healthcare resources.
- Telehealth integration. Web development in healthcare opens up opportunities for the integration of telehealth services, enabling hospitals to expand their services to remote and underserved, rural areas.
Not long ago we had such a case. Our team was approached by a Libyan company to create a healthcare system that would collect Ebola data from surveys conducted on Android and iOS devices and transmit it to a desktop for analysis. The main challenge of this task was to ensure that this system ran smoothly both with and without an Internet connection, but our team nailed it with excellence.
- Enhanced marketing. Good marketing serves both businesses and their clients. A medical web app can serve as a marketing tool, allowing clinics and hospitals to showcase their expertise, attract new users with positive patient testimonials and reviews, and promote various wellness initiatives. There are too many cases when underserved communities don’t receive care they are eligible for.
- Increased foot traffic. Finally, having a website helps in increasing foot traffic. Most people search for medical facilities online these days, and if your establishment isn’t on Google Maps, chances are very few patients will find it.
As you can see, a website isn’t just a gimmick; it’s a powerful tool that medical institutions can use to spread knowledge about their services to the masses, build trustful relationships with patients, and effectively manage medical data without paperwork.
If you’ve got an idea for a healthcare web application, share it with us, and we’ll make sure it becomes a reality!
Types of Medical Web Solutions
In the medical industry, healthcare software can be of different types. Let’s look at the most popular types of healthcare applications that can be created so you can decide which one of them you want to invest in.
Electronic Health Record System (EHR)
An EHR is the most popular type of web application used by hospitals around the world. It’s been adopted by 96% of non-federal care hospitals and 78% of office-based physicians, claiming the top spot in popularity among similar solutions. The primary function of EHR software is to collect patients’ data, including information about the medication they take, specialists they’ve seen recently, and medical procedures they have undergone in the past. Additionally, they may have a financial module, facilitating the process of invoicing and payment for prescriptions and services.
In general, there are two types of EHR, such as:
- Electronic patient record software, designed for the internal use of hospitals;
- Electronic medical record software, intended for the management of patients’ health data, including their planned visits, procedures, and medication types.
Medical Database Software
Similar to EHR, medical database software solutions are designed to store medical information about patients, including their treatment plans and history of visits to healthcare providers. However, unlike an EHR, the information stored in it is categorized not by user profiles, but by diseases. This categorization helps doctors make better decisions about health treatments by matching them with similar patient cases and educating themselves by learning from collective data patterns.
Another popular type of web solution that’s gaining traction these days is e-prescribing software. Our kids won’t get the joke about doctors’ penmanship – we are the last generation that has seen it. These days, everything happens online, with e-prescribing software enabling doctors to prescribe, renew, and cancel medications with just a few clicks. Aside from that, e-prescribing software provides access to national drug databases, serving as a quick and reliable treatment reference.
Telemedicine Web Apps
Telemedicine allows patients to save the trip to the hospital and reduce the risk of hospital superinfections. Mostly, communication with a doctor happens online in real time via video conferencing, but live chats gain popularity as well.
After an EHR, telemedicine is undoubtedly the second most popular web solution, with adoption rates increasing each year. Its market size is expected to reach $64 billion by 2025, making it one of the most promising spheres in web health app development.
Medical Billing Systems
As it comes from the name, this type of software is aimed at simplifying the financial operations of healthcare organizations, such as billing, invoicing, and revenue management. Medical billing systems are used as practice management suite components and require integration with management software like EHR and similar systems.
Healthcare Tracking Apps
The mHeath apps market size, valued at $56.26 billion in 2022, is projected to hit $861.40 billion in 2030. This means that consumer demand for these apps will continue to grow, making the development of tracking healthcare software a lucrative niche for investment.
Here are the hits in mHealth:
- Calorie counters,
- Diet calculators,
- Fitness assistants,
- Stress relief applications,
- Meditation, and the like.
In recent years, there’s also been a shift toward the use of IoT devices such as glucometers, thermometers, wristbands, and sleep trackers to source patients’ medical information. As the IoT industry quickly expands, so does the number of medical devices, providing companies with vast opportunities for medical software development.
Remote Patient Monitoring (RPM)
Remote patient monitoring has become a game-changer for many people during the pandemic, where traditional in-person healthcare meetings were not possible. It hasn’t lost its popularity since then, proving to be a highly effective method for diagnosis and treatment by leveraging data collection and transfer between patients and doctors located in different places. RPM technology is widely used through various devices such as heart monitors, ECG monitors, blood pressure monitors, oximeters, glucometers, and other wearables. With these devices, users can track real-time readings, quickly identify any abnormalities, and anticipate immediate medical help.
These are just some of the top examples of healthcare web development in 2023. However, this list can go on. There are many small software solutions like personal diaries, image processing applications, booking software, etc. used by office-based physicians and hospitals to optimize their work, offering healthcare businesses to choose the most attractive niche for investment.
A simpler but not less important type of solution used by hospitals is a website. Most often, it’s used solely for informative purposes to provide medical information and services provided by the clinic and attract new patients. As a rule, these websites are rather simple in nature and don’t take a long time to create.
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Must-Have Features of Medical Web Apps
No matter which application you choose to create, there are a number of features that are essential for any medical software. These features can be classified into three groups: for medical providers, for patients, and for administrators. Let’s talk about each in detail.
For Medical Providers:
No healthcare solution is complete without an EHR. It’s a cornerstone of medical web design, providing doctors with access to medical records, treatments, diagnoses, and other aspects of medical history in real time. With this information, doctors can make better decisions and save patients a lot of time on repeated checks.
Resource scheduling includes reminders and appointment scheduling features. These features help doctors track their schedule, manage time more efficiently, and reduce no-shows.
A medical web application should have telemedicine capabilities to allow healthcare professionals to monitor the health of their patients remotely. This feature can be a lifesaver in situations where a patient cannot physically be present in the office but urgently requires medical attention. Moreover, the value of remote monitoring is that it can prevent serious health problems by allowing doctors to promptly inform patients about deteriorating health and provide them with recommendations and treatments online.
A great feature to add is prescription tracking, enabling doctors to generate and send prescriptions to patients within the software. This can not only speed up the time of treatment but also reduce confusion and misunderstanding due to unclear handwriting.
Feedback and Surveys
Adding the ability to run and analyze surveys is a great way to understand whether patients are happy with the service or if there’s anything that can be improved to boost user retention. This data can also be valuable for market research before launching any wellness programs.
Finally, it’s important to provide medical staff with secure means of communication. It should be a safe environment where they can discuss medical cases, speak to other doctors, and share their opinions without worrying about their conversations being exposed to unauthorized parties.
One of the most important features on the end of a patient is, without a doubt, profile management. Users need to have a profile to be able to view their health-related data without going through piles of paperwork. Ideally, a healthcare profile should allow for creating multiple profiles, making it suitable for several people that may have different needs.
Bill Payment Forms
Any medical software will benefit from a secure payment gateway, allowing patients to pay for services and handle their transactions without leaving the app.
Since most medical web solutions store patients’ data, secure user registration is paramount to prevent unauthorized access and data breaches. At the same time, the process of registration shouldn’t be too long or complicated; otherwise, it may deter people from using the app.
Custom Virtual Visit Solutions
Just as doctors should be able to remotely monitor the health of their patients and advise them in case of emergencies, so do patients should have an option to contact doctors from the comforts of their home. This is where virtual visit solutions come in. Since COVID-19, when these solutions became extremely popular, they’ve never lost their appeal and remain one of the most desired features on a medical website.
It’s also necessary to include a feature that allows users to request prescriptions and refills online. This will add convenience to people’s daily lives and reduce the likelihood of medication errors.
We also recommend including the patient community in your medical web application. People love hearing other patients’ experiences and often find them inspiring, especially when it comes to serious medical conditions like cancer, autism, chronic respiratory diseases, and others.
A healthcare solution must have a dedicated admin module, allowing those responsible for managing the processes of the hospital to assign different roles and privileges, control access, alleviate any bottlenecks on the technical part, and ensure smooth platform operation on both ends.
Integrations With External Systems
Medical solutions rarely function without third-party solutions, so it’s important your platform allows for seamless integration of APIs.
The application should also have a feature to track the activities of patients so that medical establishments can collect and analyze data and make enhancements to improve the quality of service and care.
Apart from the features mentioned above, a healthcare website should have a responsive web design. This is an important part of a website’s success, ensuring users can easily access it across different devices and platforms without any issues.
In addition to essential features, you may want to enhance your healthcare portal by adding a few extra features to it. Ideally, they should be added after the MVP of your application has been validated to refine your solution.
Implement chatbot integrations to provide your customers with round-the-clock support. Platforms that offer 24/7 support improve the overall user experience and ultimately attract more customers.
Chatbots aren’t the only area where AI shines. In addition, it can be used to assist medical professionals in diagnosing conditions, predicting patient outcomes, and recommending personalized treatment plans based on historical data and trends.
“AI, while very useful in analyzing and processing big volumes of information, can’t be relied upon when it comes to giving diagnoses. A consultation with a doctor is a must.”
For a hospital website, it can be a good idea to add a 3D tour feature, allowing customers to take a virtual tour around the establishment. This will not only help set your healthcare facility apart from the rest but also give new patients a feel of your hospital and help them work their way around it when they get there.
Demonstration of Medical Procedures
In addition to 3D tours, you can add interactive demonstrations of medical procedures with AR and VR immersive technologies to provide your visitors with a unique and enticing journey.
Want a custom solution with a bundle of unique features? No problem. Get in touch for an estimate and let’s get the ball rolling
How Much Does It Cost to Develop a Healthcare Application?
Healthcare app design prices can vary widely, starting from as low as $5,000 and reaching up to $335,000. This difference in the price depends on several factors, including the complexity of the functionality and the location of the development team.
Now, let’s break down the types of apps. The priciest of all are usually telemedicine apps. Packed with advanced features like real-time video consultations, secure data transmission, and seamless integration with wearable devices, a telemedicine app takes from 1,160 to 2,160 hours to develop, converting from $100,000 to $335,000.
With regard to electronic health record systems, the ballpark figure is around $40,000. For medical diagnosis and networking platforms, the price tag falls between $20,000 and $70,000, with the final cost varying based on the specific features and complexity involved. When it comes to appointment scheduling platforms, they are comparatively more budget-friendly, averaging around $20,000. As for a simple corporate website, you’re looking at a cost of about $5,000.
Besides the type, the cost of website design and development relies heavily on who you hire to build web medical design. For example, if we take an EHR, the cost to build it with an in-house team will be around $150,000. This cost includes development hours as well as the overhead expenses associated with maintaining an internal team. On the other hand, if you opt for an outsourcing development company, the same web portal will cost you half the price.
The location of the team also plays a significant role in cost variation. Hiring a team in the USA will cost you around $200,000, with developers’ hourly rates ranging from $60 to $90. In contrast, web developers from Eastern Europe or Asia charge around $35-$45, bringing the cost of web app development down to $60,000-$100,000.
To make it a tad bit easier, we’ve put together a comparison chart of average pricing options:
How to Develop a Healthcare Website
Web development for healthcare isn’t much different from web development for fintech, for example. You need to know the main points and follow the process diligently, moving from one phase to the next. Here’s how the web development process works:
Step 1. Research the Market
First things first, start by researching the market. Ask yourself what kind of product you want to create, what problems your product will solve, and whether people actually need it. The worst thing that can happen is that you spend thousands of dollars only to find that the application you’ve put so much time, money, and effort into isn’t even in demand.
Don’t make this mistake. Always learn the audience before making financial decisions and check what applications they’ve used in the past. This will help you figure out what gaps you can fill with your solution and how you can make it stand out from the crowd.
Step 2. Gather Requirements
Once the market research is done, write down the requirements for your project. Do it together with your team and key stakeholders to ensure that your strategy aligns with the expectations of all involved parties. Clearly define the features and functionalities your healthcare website needs to have. Consider both the end-users — patients and healthcare professionals — and administrators who will manage the site.
At this stage, you should also detail security requirements and any other regulatory compliance standards that must be met. For example, when developing medical apps in the USA, it’s essential to adhere to HIPAA regulations. In the UK, the benchmark is set by the NHS, while in Europe, you need to comply with GDPR.
Step 3. Design the User Experience (UX) and User Interface (UI)
When you know what product you want to create and the requirements are ready, move on to designing the user experience and user interface. The visual part of the medical website design is your hook to capture users’ attention and create a perception of your business in their minds.
Think of the graphic elements that can help guide customers throughout the site to find relevant information or services. This can be fonts, colors, images, and CTAs. Also, make sure to add voice search to make your site accessible for people with disabilities and expand the network of your potential users.
While it might seem that creating a healthcare website design is nothing special, it plays a crucial role in shaping the overall user experience. Therefore, the best thing you can do is to entrust this work to professional UI/UX designers who know how to combine visual elements and can convey your brand’s message profoundly.
Trends in Healthcare Website Design
When creating a healthcare web design, strive to implement features that can future-proof it and keep an eye on the trends. Not all trends are worth implementing, but there are some that may have a strong impact on the visual appeal and perception of your healthcare web design and shouldn’t be overlooked. Let’s take a look at these trends.
- Make your site accessible. Any web application, and in particular a healthcare web app, must have accessible web design. People with different needs should be able to easily browse it and find information without assistance. To make your site accessible, it’s recommended to implement keyword navigation, provide the option to use large fonts, and add voice search. Also, it’s a good idea to include videos. Many older people would rather watch a video than read a wall of text, and younger generations seem to prefer videos, too.
- Integrate with wearable medical devices. There are not a lot of gadgets today that can’t read information about our health status. From fitness trackers and smartphones to regular smartphones, all of these wearables come with features designed to monitor our health. Why not use it for your benefit? Implementing integration with wearable medical devices into your health application is a perfect way to improve UX and future-proof your solution.
- Implement online tests. It’s become common to provide users with the ability to do tests from the privacy of their homes using apps and SaaS solutions. Our team was working on a project like this. We created an application that helped patients to do blood tests at home and send results t