First the airlines adopted iPads, in the cockpit to replace flight manuals, in the cabin to help flight attendants, and as entertainment devices for passengers.
Now hospitals have begun to utilize iPads as well, in order to operate machinery, provide medical care, and as input devices to assist both hospital staff and patients with information retrieval, record keeping, and communication.
iPads that can be loaded with customized apps and programmed to work within hospital systems are a great way for hospitals to keep labor costs down, to improve staff efficiency, and to cut down on the hassle of extensive paperwork. As a result, many hospitals have begun training staff to use iPads, implementing them in daily use, and coming up with creative ways to get the most out of the tablet devices.
In Singapore, at the Changi General Hospital, iPads have been installed in stations (iPad Kiosks) that allow visitors and patients to get directions, find departments, and locate where they’re supposed to go.
At the Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston, nurses use computers to gather patient information before the patient meets with a physician. The doctor is able to bring an iPad with him into the patient room to have all of that current information right at his or her fingertips, saving time and preventing careless mistakes due to miscommunications.
The New York Methodist Hospital has mounted iPads next to its EKG and other diagnostic machines. The iPads give nurses, technicians, and doctors a way to quickly access all of a patient’s data for analysis and diagnosis on the spot.
iPads are a great way for hospitals to streamline information between nurses, doctors, and hospital staff, which provides for a better patient experience. In the future, we will see iPads in a more operational capacity as they get approved for medical use. There are currently apps for monitoring blood pressure and heart rate, and there’s even an app developed in Germany that can operate as a fully functional ultrasound machine.
iPads are still so new to us that we’ve barely scratched the surface of what the device is capable of in various industries, but one thing is for sure - Apple’s tablet is cheap, it’s fast, it’s efficient, and it’s here to stay.