Expect to see more iPads used at point-of-care

The use of iPads in healthcare settings is likely to surge in the coming year, according to a survey of nearly 950 Healthcare Information and Management Systems Society (HIMSS) members. Nearly 70 percent of those surveyed said they plan to deploy the iPad and other iOS devices next year. And more than one in four said they plan to deploy the devices immediately.

Point-of-care apps are driving the rapid deployment of iPads in hospitals and other healthcare organizations. One-third of those polled said point-of-care applications--such as lab order visualization and results, clinical decision support and medical image viewing application--were top priorities.

But health IT departments face challenges in the coming year as they get more iPads into their organizations. Maintaining data  security could be one of the biggest, the survey confirms. Nearly 75 percent of those surveyed said that secure configuration and deployment would be the top iPad IT management challenge. What if clinicians insist on bringing in their own devices to access a hospital's EMRs or CPOE systems? A majority (53 percent) also identified mobile application deployment as another major issue.

The findings come from a survey conducted during an online webinar in October.

"As more patient information is moved into EMRs and made accessible both inside and outside the organization via a range of devices, including mobile devices and tablets, the risk of a privacy breach rises," notes Lynne Dunbrack, an analyst with IDC Health Insights.

To learn more:
- read the InformationWeek article