Healthcare facilities throughout the country will be seeing a growing number of patients due to the effects of the Affordable Care Act. This is why it's important that CIOs are ready to make investments in mobile solutions that can streamline efficiency for doctors and nurses, according to Healthcare IT News. Providing staff members with tablets to supplement patient care has the potential to save clinicians a few extra minutes each day.
"It's a minute saved here and there," Brock Morris, CIO at Pediatric Associates, a seven-clinic health network based in Bellevue, Wash., told the source. "Maybe 10 minutes with sick patients, 20 minutes with well-check appointments, adding up to 30 minutes a day. There's very real potential there. You can turn that time into better patient engagement."
Doctors and nurses need to embrace apps
"There's an app for everything" is something that many Americans have heard, but don't quite take to heart. However, professionals in the healthcare industry must prepare for the onslaught of apps they have at their fingertips. Clinicians have the opportunity to leverage apps for hospital inventory management, accessing patient medical records and so much more. Keeping this in mind, tablets and other types of mobile devices are going to play a bigger role at healthcare centers in the upcoming years.
"In a couple of years, tablets will be the norm in healthcare," Johnathan Samples, executive vice president of innovation at app developer Greenway, told the website. "You need a native mobile solution for that, not one that interrupts a physician's workflow and creates any obstacles, because then they won't use it."
Carefully select the right mobile devices
When hospital CIOs are choosing the solutions that doctors and nurses will be using to increase efficiency, it's important that their decisions are data-driven and they don't just pick the first device that they see. A post for the IT Peer Network, an Intel blog, stated that there are a number of questions that CIOs have to be able to answer before settling on the tablet to be used throughout the hospital.
The first question should be "What will the device be used for?" Understanding why healthcare professionals need tablets will make it easier to choose the devices. For example, some doctors will want to use an innovation that makes it easy to closely monitor their patients when they are on call, while others will depend on tablets to communicate with other doctors and nurses. Speaking with all members of staff before investing in devices is imperative to making the right decision.
Another consideration that has to be made before settling on the best tablet for the healthcare organization is the types of information that the device will be used to view. According to the blog post, certain doctors may need high-definition screens to view medical images and videos. However, this is not a necessity for clinicians who will be leveraging the tablets for other purposes.