Our population is becoming more mobile on a daily basis, and healthcare professionals are no exception. In fact, the very nature of the healthcare industry makes it ripe for a move to mobile. It also presents special implementation challenges.
Healthcare is an on-the-go occupation. In hospitals, clinicians may walk miles a day, visiting patients on different floors and in different departments. Nurses often spend more time at patients’ bedsides than at the nurses’ station. In office-based practices, clinicians frequently move from room to room as well as from clinic to hospital and back.
It’s no wonder, then, that so many clinicians have a smartphone in their pocket or a tablet in their briefcase. Staying in touch and accessing information is key in today’s world, and nowhere is that more true than in the healthcare industry, where constant communication is critical to delivering effective and efficient patient care.
The Rise of mHealth
In survey results published in December 2012 by the Healthcare Information and Management Systems Society, more than 90 percent of respondents (mostly hospital CIOs and IT managers) reported that physicians at their organizations used mobile devices . The rate was almost as high for non-physician clinicians.
Increasingly, these clinicians are using several different screens—mobile and otherwise—throughout their days. According to the IDC Health Insights Clinical Mobility Buyer Behavior Survey, clinicians use upwards of 6 screens in one day, including desktop computers, laptops, smartphones, and tablets. In fact, doctors’ use of tablets has almost doubled since 2011, with more than three fifths of physicians reporting that they use one.
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