Meaningful Use spurs increased use of handheld devices

Clinicians may like using handheld devices for a myriad of reasons, but one big driving force behind their soaring popularity is the Meaningful Use incentive program, CMIO recently reported.

That's the scoop from a recent report published by Kalorama Information, which noted that the market for the devices has "exploded." According to the report, the market for handhelds reached $11 billion globally in 2011, a 10 percent increase from 2007. The fastest growth was in devices used to enter and report patient data, which researchers conclude is a sign that the need for clinicians to demonstrate Meaningful Use is affecting the market.

"Meaningful use of [electronic medical records] means meaningful use of handhelds, as the patient-centered nature of healthcare work doesn't merit a lot of desk time," Bruce Carlson, Kalorama's publisher in a statement obtained by FierceEMR.

There has been much attention on the benefits of handheld devices for patient monitoring, a fact pointed out in the report. But the catalyst for the surge in growth of the devices is their ability to handle "administrative" uses.

The report notes that EHRs and Meaningful Use are not the only drivers boosting the use of handheld devices. Other reasons cited included the increase in offsite medical care, cost restraints, and the expanding capabilities of the devices.

To learn more:
- read the announcement
- here's the link to download the report
- check out this CMIO article