iPad positives seem to outweigh the drawbacks for healthcare

Overwhelmingly strong iPad sales in the U.S. have prompted Apple to delay the product's introduction in foreign markets, but that hasn't stopped health IT reporters in other countries from licking their chops, too.

North of the border, Canadian Healthcare Technology takes a look at the iPad's prospects in healthcare, and suggests that this is just the beginning of a revolution in portability. Sure, the device has some negatives--notably, lack of USB ports, a camera, multitasking and support for Flash--but it seems almost tailor-made for physicians and nurses. It's light, it's fast, the screen is beautiful, resolution is suitable for viewing some diagnostic images, and, some say, it's just the right size to fit in the pocket of a lab coat.

"Nevertheless, there's so much buzz about this computer that many will overlook the drawbacks and will focus on the portability, clear graphics and speedy processor," writes CHT editor Jerry Zeidenberg. "What's more, there will soon be competitors producing devices, such as Dell, HP and Acer, who will drive further innovation." As they say, imitation is the sincerest form of flattery.

Ultimately, success of the iPad in healthcare will depend on the quality of the apps. As we've reported, Epocrates is working on a native iPad version of its popular drug database, and the app for medication checker Lexi-Comp is out already. We also learn this week that perhaps the first EMR app specifically designed for the iPad, Dr. Chrono EMR, is now available--with a free iPad as part of the service contract.

For more details:
- read this Canadian Healthcare Technology story
- see this iMedicalApps review of Dr. Chrono