Last Updated | July 25, 2023
Executive Summary – How Much Does it Cost to Develop a Telemedicine App?
Are you an entrepreneur, a startup, or a healthcare organization venturing into the telemedicine space? Read this article to get an insight into the development cost for a telemedicine app, the required features, and other key details.
Overview – How Much Does it Cost to Develop a Telemedicine App?
COVID-19 has triggered digitalization in healthcare sectors of developed countries across the world. Countries like the United Kingdom, Germany, and the United States are the driving forces in the shift from in-person doctor visits to telemedicine, using apps, smartphones, and video appointments.
In response to the pandemic, telemedicine adoption has proliferated in these countries, where healthcare providers consistently seek to provide easy and safe access to care.
The factors that underpin the increase in telemedicine adoption are:
- The growing interest of consumers and providers in this new technology
- Greater access and affordability it promises
- Strong investment
Besides healthcare providers and patients, telemedicine is a lucrative area for entrepreneurs and startups as well.
Many startups have been putting in investments in virtual healthcare and digital health space, fueling innovation. In 2020, the venture capitalist digital health investment spiked to $14.7 billion, which was almost twice the investment in 2017. But that just scratches the surface.
Telemedicine has much more potential. It is a robust option for care. Further initiatives in telemedicine and developing applications can solve many ongoing issues to quality care and prepare healthcare space for future crises.
So, if you, as a startup, entrepreneur, or healthcare provider, want to venture into developing a telemedicine app, this article has got your back. In this article, we span different aspects of developing a telemedicine app- including development costs and features- along with some key details.
So, let’s dive right in!
Telemedicine – The New Face of Healthcare
Telemedicine is a component of digital health that allows patients to take part in real-time virtual consultations with healthcare providers.
A major focus of telemedicine is to make virtual healthcare accessible to patients in remote areas. It promises convenience and affordability to patients, supports weak healthcare systems, and connects global networks of healthcare providers.
By opening a virtual window for patients, telemedicine allows them to receive care at the convenience of their homes. According to Statista, 58% of US adults feel comfortable using telemedicine for urgent healthcare concerns.
The idea behind telemedicine is not to replace clinical visits but to complement regular healthcare. Patients may use telemedicine apps to:
- Talk with a doctor (and see if there’s a need for a physical appointment)
- Access nutritional and other mental health counseling
- Request or renew medication prescriptions
- Receive urgent healthcare for conditions such as common rashes
The Rise of Telemedicine Apps
In some large states, telemedicine is becoming the talk of the town. With the rising interest in telemedicine, the global telemedicine market has seen significant growth in recent years. According to a forecast, by 2030, the market will spike to nearly 460 US billion dollars.
Luckily, the growing market always has room for a new product. When considering how to start a telemedicine practice, developing a new telemedicine app requires extensive analysis and a deep understanding of the users you are targeting.
The more you know about users, the better you identify their pains, gaps, and problems- and the faster you can get your first evaluation. Once you evaluate your target group, you can step up to learn about the costs and create a development budget.
How Much Does it Cost to Develop a Telemedicine or Telehealth App?
The cost of setting up telemedicine apps largely depends on the number of features you add in correspondence with what potential users expect to see.
To give a straightforward estimation, developing a telemedicine app can cost $40,000 to $250,000+. This price is average which ranges for different types of applications, for example:
- The cost of a store-and-forward app can be $40,000 – $50,000
- For a remote monitoring app, the development costs $55,000 – $200,000+
- A real-time interactive can cost $75,000 – $150,000+
To give you a better idea of overall cost, let’s breakdown development cost into different aspects:
1. Development Cost Breakdown
If you are developing a basic solution, it may cost you somewhere between $15,000 and $150,000. The variation in this price range is subject to factors like:
- Size of the development team
- Number of integrations you add
- Features and functionality (for example, a highly complex and feature-rich app will be more pricey than an app with basic functions such as appointment management, video calls, text chats, and user profiles.)
- The platform (iOS, Android, Web) for which you develop the app is the precursory point in the app cost estimate. The cost varies for different operating systems. Developing a doctor app for Android can cost higher than for iOS.
- Design and user experience are extremely important. The more intuitive interface you design, the better will be the user experience. Creating a better user experience will require you to bear some extra costs.
2. Timeframe for Development
You can expect to spend around 4 to 8 months on development, including requirements evaluation, project planning, UI and UX design, and MVP development and launch.
The timeframe can increase or reduce depending on whether you hire medical app developers or partner up with a telemedicine software development company. A company with years of experience in the development space can take less time than a team of freelance developers.
3. App Marketing and Promotion Costs
Today, the app store landscape is ruled by the well-known duopoly- Apple’s App Store and Google’s Play Store. Although there are numerous mobile apps in these stores, users only use a smattering of apps regularly. Yet, the number of apps is constantly increasing, and so is the competition.
In this competitive environment, no wonder marketing a new medical app consumes the bulk of an organization’s marketing expenses.
Regardless of the type of app, here’s a glimpse of what the costs of marketing an app look like:
- Market research- $5K to $15K
- Beta testing- $5K or less
- ASO tool – $25 to $1,500/month
- Marketing agency fee- up to $25k /app
- App PR outreach – $100 – $300 /hour
- Influencer marketing – $10 to $18k /month
These numbers are only estimates. Your marketing budget will vary based on the size of your business and the audience you want to target.
4. Maintenance and Support Costs
Developing a telemedicine app is rarely a one-time activity. After its development, the app requires maintenance and updates from time to time. Constant maintenance and support keep the app updated and prevent app uninstalls.
So, you need to consider the maintenance phase from start to finish.
The rule of thumb is to allocate up to 15-20% of the initial development cost to app maintenance. But, keep in mind your app maintenance expenses can be more or less than this depending on the different steps and factors your maintenance process involves.
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Also, find out the cost of LIMS software, it may be beneficial for your healthcare business.
What are the Features and Costs of Telemedicine App Development?
Features can make an app better and more useful. Various elements can be added to expand the functions in the app and create more convenience for users. The addition of features to the app increases the complexity of the app as well as the cost.
Let’s take a look at some important features you can add to your app:
A sign-in feature is the primary function of an app. The telemedicine app should let patients sign in using their emails or third-party applications like Google and Facebook.
After signing in, the next step for users is to set up profiles. From patients, the app should collect details like health information, health condition, and treatment history.
For doctors, their profiles can contain their experience, the hospital their work in, contact details, etc.
This is a prime element of a telemedicine app and the key factor in deciding the cost of the app. The app should allow live video calling and transmit video in high quality for doctors to see symptoms clearly.
A calendar is useful for both patients and doctors. It helps make appointments and keep track of them.
We recommend syncing the calendar with the one that patients use – for example, Google Calendar or Microsoft Calendar. This way, their phones will notify them when an appointment is due.
One of the key features of a telemedicine app is a smooth payment process.
You can create your own payment mechanism or integrate your app with a third-party payment app. Creating a new payment mechanism will cost you more, whereas using a third-party payment service will keep the cost on the lower side. There are many payment gateways to integrate with, such as PayPal, Braintree, and Stripo.
Search and Filters
The search algorithms can let patients search for doctors. Using search options, patients can find doctors based on their locality, preferred language, specialty, availability, and consultation fee.
Receiving notifications is an important feature for both doctors and patients. It notifies them of upcoming appointments, a new text messages, payment status, and more.
This function allows doctors to send electronic prescriptions, which will be saved in a patient’s database.
How much does it cost to develop a telemedicine app like the “Doctor-on-demand”?
A doctor-on-demand app is very broad in terms of features and functions. It is a blend of two apps: a doctor app and a patient app as well as a robust admin panel that links them.
The cost of developing a doctor-on-demand app depends on the services you take while hiring software developers:
- UX/ UI Design
- iOS and Android native app development
- Web development
- Backend development
- Project management
- Quality assurance
The cost of the services can be estimated on hourly charges, which can be $20/hr – $50/hr. Based on these charges, if you plan to get a simple on-demand doctor app, the total cost can start from $25,000-$40,000 and go up to $40,000-$70,000.
Building a telemedicine platform involves three choices: custom development, white-label solution, and SaaS.
Let’s talk about them one by one.
1. Custom Development
Custom development is about building an app from scratch. With a custom app, you get the flexibility to add whatever features and functions you want. You also get the liberty to add more features to make it a fully-featured platform once it is stable.
SaaS is a software-as-a-service platform that is ready-made software for subscribers to use. For a SaaS platform, a vendor is responsible for everything, which saves you from all the hustle of maintaining and updating the solution.
3. White-label Solution
A white-label solution is also owned and developed by a third party. But you can purchase, rebrand, and use it as your own custom telemedicine platform.
But, you don’t get the intellectual rights to the codebase (so you do not sell the code. But, you can still sell the platform.)
When developing a telemedicine app, you have to consider many nuances. There are many steps that help you make the most of telemedicine startup costs by going the right way and avoiding mistakes.
Here’s a brief overview of the steps:
- Determine what problems the application will solve and choose a niche
- Understand the target group of your app
- Do market research to find an application type
- Devise a business plan to reduce risks and think of more ways to attract investments
- Create UX/ UI to make your app visually compelling
- Having taken all essential points into account, start creating your app. A better way to start is to develop an MVP (minimal viable product) that will have similar features as the final product. But, it will let you evaluate the product viability with minimal investment.
How do you make a telemedicine platform by Folio3?
Folio3, the leading healthcare software development company, helps you make a telemedicine platform that bridges the gap between doctors and patients.
Whether you want to develop a cloud-based telemedicine platform, a telemedicine mobile app, a telemedicine videoconferencing software, or integrate your platform with healthcare ERP systems, our services cover all your needs.
We are also recognized as the best electronic health records software company. Our electronic records integration solutions offer a highly secure exchange of patient data from your app to your existing EHR systems.
To learn more about our services, drop us a line so we can help you.
To Sum Up – How Much Does it Cost to Develop a Telemedicine App?
Telemedicine has the potential to reduce costs, increase patient outreach, improve care outcomes, and help healthcare providers efficiently respond to population health needs. Telemedicine applications are the need of the day. They can provide clinical support to any remote area by reducing geographic barriers.
As a healthcare organization or a medical software startup, your primary goal should be to address user pain points by developing a solution that specifically targets their needs. Custom healthcare app development services can give you the liberty to choose features and functions.
If you want to build a custom app, contact us for a free consultation. We can help you develop a reliable telemedicine app in your target niche for your target users.