Here’s What This Means for the Healthcare Industry
In the healthcare industry, a large selection of applications for mobile smart devices are now available and increased usage of these devices is transforming the practice of medicine. These tools help doctors and nurses perform important tasks and are used in many areas, such as health record maintenance, patient management and monitoring, decision-making, and communication with patients and colleagues.
Mobile devices and iOS apps benefit healthcare practitioners by giving them increased access to tools and helping them make better clinical decisions that improve patient outcomes. Here are some recent findings on the increasing use of mobile smart devices among medical practitioners and what this trend means for the future of healthcare.
Growing Use of Mobile Smart Devices in Healthcare
The use of mobile smart devices in the healthcare industry has grown dramatically in recent years. A 2016 Spok survey found that 63% of organizations have a plan for mobile devices, which is a 34% increase from 2012.
The survey also found that 78% of participants intend to use mobile devices for doctor-to-doctor communication and 74% said they would use mobile devices for nurse-to-doctor communication and test results management. In addition, 78% of hospitals surveyed indicated that they supported smartphone usage. The study also revealed that the top three systems being accessed by mobile devices are electronic medical records (EMR), directory lookup, and drug reference.
Benefits of Mobile Healthcare
There are many ways that mobile usage is transforming the healthcare industry. Here are some of the major benefits of mobile healthcare:
- Allows for remote viewing of test results
Specialized iOS tools can be used to remotely view diagnostic tests. With these tools, medical practitioners can access test results from anywhere. This gives them the opportunity to read the tests sooner and get results to their patients faster. With these apps, doctors can also store studies and share them with their colleagues when necessary. In many cases, viewing test results on mobile devices is just as effective as viewing them at a standard workstation.
- Increased workflow efficiency
The use of mobile applications increases workflow efficiency by automating much of the paperwork and reducing clerical errors in recording patient history. This automation decreases the risk of misplaced files and records. There are also apps that assist with data collection and entering patient information into an EMR. They provide secure access to patient information like medical history, test results, and scans. Doctors can easily access patient information on their devices from anywhere, which can save crucial time in a medical emergency.
- Improves communication between doctors and nurses
Recent studies have shown the use of mobile devices improves communication between doctors and nurses in medical wards. The devices provide a variety of ways to communicate, such as texting, phone calls, and video conferences and helps doctors to respond to emails more quickly. In another survey, over 80% of participants said they used mobile devices to communicate with their colleagues about patient care and found texting to be more efficient than phone calls or in-person meetings. Most importantly, using mobile devices to communicate also saves time in emergency situations, which can save lives.
- Assists communication between doctors and patients
The growing use of mobile devices in healthcare allows for more real-time communication between doctors and patients inside and outside of a hospital or medical office. This makes it easier for patients to get in touch with their doctors if they have a question or concern and for doctors to check in with patients about their treatment. Patients who believe their doctors are truly invested in their care are more engaged and more engaged patients are more likely to follow their doctor’s care plan, take medications, and incorporate healthy practices.
- Allows for direct patient monitoring
Mobile devices are increasingly being used to directly monitor patients with many chronic diseases. iOS devices can be used to take patient vitals, which allows data to be gathered electronically. This can reduce the need for office visits and provides a way for doctors to monitor patients with chronic conditions such as diabetes, Alzheimer’s, and heart disease from anywhere.
How Mobile Smart Devices Are Transforming Healthcare
One of the main advantages of mobile smart devices is they allow doctors to check in on their patients anytime. These devices increase efficiency in healthcare settings, which can save lives in emergencies. Epiphany’s Cardio Server Mobile is one iOS application that is transforming healthcare by allowing doctors to access ECG data remotely. This means that a patient who has an ECG in an ambulance can have the results sent directly to their cardiologist’s mobile device. By viewing the test results immediately on an iPhone, the doctor can make a diagnosis and have the Cath Lab prepare for the necessary procedure before the patient arrives at the hospital. This saves critical time in a cardiac emergency and dramatically increases a patient’s chance of survival.
Cardio Server Mobile is optimized for iOS smart devices, which makes it extremely responsive and easy for a doctor to use. It is also a secure-data application and no patient data is left on the device after the doctor finishes with the test results.
Another cutting-edge iOS app is Kardia by AliveCor, which allows a patient to record a single-lead electrocardiogram using the KardiaMobile device with a smartphone or the KardiaBand with the Apple Watch. After taking the ECG, AliveCor’s algorithm’s will tell the patient if they are in atrial fibrillation. The patient can send the results directly to a cardiologist or a cloud-based platform and save the information in the patient’s records. This allows the cardiologist to quickly detect an arrhythmia, which can cause sudden cardiac death if untreated. AliveCor allows an arrhythmia patient to get treatment immediately, which can save lives.
Epiphany added over 100 devices to our compatibility list in 2017, including this device. When launched, this integration will make it possible for patients to transmit ECGs taken from the Kardia device and have them available in Cardio Server for a cardiologist to compare with previous studies.
The use of mobile smart devices and apps in medical settings continues to grow. An increasing number of doctors and medical professionals are making use of smartphone technology to view test results and to communicate more efficiently with colleagues and patients. A vast selection of apps for mobile smart devices are being developed and refined, which will continue to transform the future of healthcare.