Mobile Medical Technology Revolutionizing Patient Care

2013-10-31
 

State-of-the-art mobile healthcare tools are transforming medicine, as indicated by results of a recent study from CompTIA, a non-profit trade association for the IT industry.

While most healthcare organizations are just beginning to embrace mobile health technologies, the study shows that there is a high level of interest in using mobile technology for initiatives ranging from medication monitoring and management to accessing electronic health records (EHR) remotely.

Mobility Has Positive Impact on Patient Care

Of the 375 healthcare providers surveyed, about 72 percent reported that mobility was having a positive impact on healthcare. Over 50 percent stated that some staff are utilizing tablets currently, and 60 percent said the same about smartphone usage.

“It takes time for emerging technologies to mature and for users to make sufficient progress along the learning curve before the benefits of innovation can be realized,” said Tim Herbert, vice president of research at CompTIA, in a release accompanying the study results. “We’re now beginning to see this happen in the healthcare sector.”

Transitioning to Electronic Records

Concerning EHR use, the study showed that that 43 percent of respondents had a comprehensive system in place, while 20 percent were utilizing a partial system.

Only 9 percent of the providers surveyed indicated that they had taken no action at all regarding EHR implementation.

Still there were 56 percent of respondents reporting that they were “less than optimally prepared” to transition to electronic records. Key areas for improvement to EHRs according to respondents included making such systems easier to use, improving interoperability and increasing operating speeds.

Safety Concerns Causing Some Disruption

As healthcare providers expand their use of mobile devices and apps, new security measures will need to be implemented.

The study revealed that there may need to be more concern among healthcare providers for the increasing level of security risks. Only 17 percent of the respondents reported having a comprehensive mobile device policy in place, with only 20 percent saying they have implemented partial policies.

“Even if healthcare providers are not putting personal health information at risk, they may be setting themselves up for other types of disruptions associated with insufficient mobile security policies and practices,” said Herbert.

Are you accessing medical imaging using a mobile device? If so, what has your experience been like?

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