WASHINGTON – Four organizations have formed a multi-stakeholder collaboration, Xcertia, dedicated to improving the quality, safety and effectiveness of mobile health apps. The initial supporters of the collaboration include the American Heart Association (AHA), the American Medical Association (AMA), DHX Group and the Healthcare Information and Management Systems Society (HIMSS).
“Today’s announcement, and the founding of Xcertia with our co-founders, represents a significant first step to bringing meaningful clarity and focus to evaluation within the mHealth space,” said Dr. Eric Peterson, chairperson of the American Heart Association’s Center for Health Technology & Innovation, in a statement.
Xcertia will establish and promote best practices for mobile health apps. The nonprofit will also respond to the critical need for a comprehensive effort to develop a framework of principles that will positively impact the trajectory of the mobile health app industry. Xcertia’s guidelines will also be a resource to support consumer and clinician choice of mobile health apps.
“After years of pioneering the art and science of mobile health app curation, DHX Group is pleased to join forces with our Xcertia co-founders to spark an industry movement in establishing guidelines to help patients in the selection and use of appropriate and secure mobile health apps,” said DHX Group founder and chairman David Vinson, in a statement.
This collaborative effort will incorporate feedback from its members in a consensus-driven process to advance the body of knowledge around clinical content, usability, privacy and security, interoperability and evidence of efficacy. Xcertia will not engage in certifying mobile health apps, but will encourage others to apply its principles and guidelines in the development and curation of safe and effective mobile health apps.
“Our role in helping to form Xcertia underscores the AMA’s ongoing commitment to innovation and collaboration that helps empower patients to assess mobile health apps, and enable physicians to take a lead role in advancing the state of digital health technology,” said Dr. James L. Madara, AMA executive vice president and CEO, in a statement.
“With safe, effective and reputable mobile health apps, clinicians, caregivers, consumers and patients can better manage care and maintain their wellness,” said Carla Smith, HIMSS executive vice president, in a statement.