Secret Sauce To Building a Healthcare MVP that Sells!

Key Takeaways:

  1. A healthcare MVP is the basic version of a new healthcare application. It includes the core features only.
  2. A healthcare MVP enables development companies to speed up the release of an app and capture the market. Early release of an application allows companies to receive user feedback, iterate, and then relaunch it in the market.
  3. Compliance rules and interoperability standards differentiate healthcare MVPs from others.

The Covid-19 pandemic saw a significant acceleration in digital health products. The faster time-to-market of these products can only mean one thing – using healthcare MVP (Minimum Viable Product) to test and launch the product.

We all have heard of Dropbox, Spotify, and Uber. They only made it to a Unicorn status due to MVP.

But, what is an MVP? Simply put, it is a version of a new product created with the least effort. It is not a prototype and has little to do with development. Expanding on this idea, a healthcare MVP is the basic version of a new digital health product such as a patient portal or appointment scheduling app. It comprises core features only. The idea is to iterate and develop a healthcare app or software based on the feedback acquired from healthcare MVP.

A healthcare MVP plays a crucial role in emerging startups because it helps entrepreneurs build a product with a market need. Plus, they pitch for funding and scale their startups to newer heights. As per CB Insights, 42 percent of the startups fail because there’s no market need for the product. A healthcare MVP helps validate the business idea early on and iterate it before deploying it in the market.

Now, let’s understand the crux of healthcare MVP and how to develop one.

MVP vs. Prototype vs. PoC

MVP, prototype, and PoC (Proof of Concept) all function with different goals and objectives. Each of them has a different target audience, process, and scope of work.

1. MVP (Minimum Viable Product):

  • It is a basic version of a healthcare app with all the core features.
  • The key goal is to gather user feedback and focus on early profits.
  • It is used to reduce time-to-market the healthcare app and to save costs.

2. Prototype:

  • It displays the look of an application, and software architecture, and visually displays user flow.
  • Here the target audience is the stakeholders.
  • The major goal is to evaluate the application and iterate UX/UI design before starting with the backend development.

3. PoC (Proof of Concept):

  • This can be a software demo, a written project, or a code that is crafted to demonstrate the real-life possibility of a product. Here, the emphasis is given on the core tech rather than the UX/UI part.
  • The target audience is the project owners and the development team.
  • The vital goal is to check whether a project is feasible or not.

Importance of Creating a Healthcare MVP

Before hopping on to the development of a healthcare MVP, let’s have a glance at why creating a healthcare MVP is paramount for the success of a healthcare application and the company. You’ll never skip this step after you’ve understood the power of crafting an MVP.

1. Enhances Time-to-Market a Healthcare App

It is not enough to simply have a brilliant idea for a healthcare application. The rate at which the idea is brought to life is equally important. The market doesn’t wait for anyone. It is constantly changing and it is up to the healthcare development companies to keep up with the altering dynamics of the market. A healthcare MVP enables development companies to speed up the release of a healthcare app and capture the market.

Early release of healthcare app allows companies to receive user feedback, iterate, and then relaunch the product in the market. The faster this cycle, the more iterations an app goes through, and the better it becomes. Faster time-to-market also eliminates all possible competitors and keeps you ahead.

2. Allows Testing Healthcare Apps with Users

Healthcare MVP testing involves releasing a simple version of a healthcare app to a selected group of users and collecting feedback. Testing the core features of an app early on allows developers to detect potential problems, refine offerings, avoid costly mistakes, and ensure that the product meets the demands of the target audience.

One of the notable examples of MVP testing is Dropbox. This company released a video demonstrating the core functionality of Dropbox which allowed them to collect user feedback and sign-ups. The same concept can be applied while developing a healthcare MVP.

Other ways to test healthcare MVP for an app are:

  1. Crowdfunding
  2. Blogging
  3. User interviews
  4. Pre-order pages
  5. Social media surveys
  6. Emailing
  7. Paper prototypes
  8. A/B testing
  9. Software testing
  10. Micro surveys

By using these methods to test healthcare application with users, development companies can uplift their product value and adhere to the pain points of the users.

3. Adheres to “A Dollar Saved is a Dollar Earned”

Ensure maximum savings through healthcare MVP development. How so? Developing a fully functional healthcare application requires extensive resources and time. So, by prioritizing essential features for MVP, companies save costs on unnecessary resources.

Further, MVPs are developed to improve time-to-market. This indicates that putting the app on the market sooner generates revenue earlier and shortens the period of financial uncertainty.

A healthcare MVP helps to build a user-centric application, which eliminates the chances of taking a costly wrong turn or building against the market needs. Minimum viable product development eliminates the need for massive rework, thus saving costs.

4. Opens Doors for Pitching to Investors

One of the key goals of a healthcare minimum viable product is to showcase the functionality of a healthcare app. This is valuable information for investors because it allows them to understand the problem that the app is trying to solve. It also points out the effectiveness of a healthcare application.

Gone are the days when only pitching to investors was enough. It may not work anymore due to the rise in competition in the healthcare technology landscape. A healthcare startup may have a great idea on paper, but what’s the use if it doesn’t translate well into a product? Healthcare MVPs make presentations more effective, understandable, and streamlined.

5. Aids in Prioritizing Features and Functions

Too many features and functionalities complicate an application. It confuses the users on how to use the healthcare app effectively. So, healthcare MVP allows the development team to focus only on the core features and functionalities, thus streamlining the app’s operations. It is also a proper way to showcase the effectiveness of an app to investors.

By not including too many features, development companies save not only time and effort but also the costs involved in crafting those features.

What Makes Healthcare MVP Different from the Others?

So, apart from scaling metrics, cloud hosting, and user experience, the healthcare app MVP comprises some special requirements that make it unique. Before a healthcare app enters the market, the MVP must adhere to compliance rules and interoperability standards.

1. Healthcare Compliance Rules

A healthcare application is a storehouse of e-PHI (Protected Health Information) that must be safeguarded to maintain the privacy of patients. To do that, a healthcare app must comply with HIPAA (Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act) regulations.

These regulations state technical, administrative, and physical safeguards to protect ePHI from potential data breaches and other cyberattacks. A healthcare MVP must specify which tools will protect ePHI such as firewalls, staff training and education, user authentication, and data encryption.

2. Interoperability Standards

Interoperability means seamless data exchange between varied healthcare systems. For smooth data exchange, healthcare applications must follow certain interoperability standards such as FHIR (Fast Healthcare Interoperability Resources) and USCDI (United States Core Data for Interoperability).

Users are more likely to go for healthcare apps that adhere to interoperability and compliance standards as they guarantee the security and privacy of healthcare data.

Crucial Steps for a Successful Healthcare MVP Development

How to develop a successful MVP that will not only impress the investors but also give a positive ROI? Let’s find out.

1. Think from the Perspective of Users

As a healthcare software development company, who do you want to build the product for? Is it the hospitals, clinics, pharmaceutical companies, or a HealthTech startup (in case they’re outsourcing)? Every one of them has different needs. For instance, a small clinic may require automation tools to streamline the documentation process. Or a chain of hospitals may need better practice management software.

Apart from this, also consider what the patients are looking for. If designing a mental health application that is directly for patients, then implement features that they need. Take into account the user’s perspective while building a minimum viable product.

2. Craft Out an MVP Roadmap

A roadmap involves meticulous planning of steps and requirements to complete a healthcare MVP. Start with budget estimation and then slowly make your way to designing workflows for the development team. Then list out the core features, user persona, and the product journey. Planning these aspects early on in the development stage eliminates the need for rework.

While choosing features and functionalities, consider using the Kano prioritization model. The thumb rule is to weed out expensive and fancy features and go only with the basics.

3. Do Not Skip Out on Compliance

Compliance rules are non-negotiable. As discussed in the earlier part of the article, a healthcare app is incomplete with data security and interoperability standards.

Whoever the app is for, the first question they’ll be asking is ‘Is the app compliant?’ The user must feel secure to operate the application, and who wouldn’t want to go for a well-protected app?

4. Induct Tech Stack and the UX

Enlist tech stack which will help to build the app. An ideal tech stack should be able to boost data security and eliminate any vulnerabilities at the backend and front end. It should also be capable of data storage and management. Choose a tech stack that helps in scaling an application and is easy to use. For example, AWS, React Native, Flutter, etc.

Next is the UX and it is an essential aspect of healthcare minimum viable product because it displays the overall look and feel of an app. The design itself attracts the users. So, imagine building a healthcare app with poor navigation and bright colors, it is never going to attract potential users. However, a healthcare app with cool colors and readable font is likely to gain traction in the market.

5. Test and Iterate

Healthcare MVP is a testing stage for the entire development cycle. Once it is rolled out, each of the features must be tested with user groups. Bring out the MVP to healthcare organizations, clinics, patients, and investors. Let them reflect on the product and give bias-free feedback. Developers can rework the application based on the feedback, fill in the gaps, and then release the app to the market.

Launch a Successful Healthcare MVP with Arkenea

Developing a healthcare MVP is not an easy task. It requires prior knowledge about the healthcare domain, including the rules and regulations that go with it. Sometimes, it can be overwhelming and stressful.

But, creating and launching a healthcare MVP with Arkenea can take the burden off your shoulders. We are a healthcare software development company and specialize in offering digital healthcare products that match industry standards. From healthcare apps to AI and software development, we got you covered.

Just connect with us for a consultation call today!