Jan 27, 2010

Just what the Doctor requires- an "iTablet" !

Apple Inc - Photo from my iBook

Apple has created many Gadgets/ applications which have changed the face of health care. The apple "iTablet", when it does come out, could be another such device.
(They called it "iPad" !)

For years, efforts have been made to integrate the use of Tablet PCs in Hospitals. Conventional laptops are just too bulky/big to carry during clinical rounds, and most hand held devices almost "actively" resist being "button-punched". :-)

The much awaited "iTablet" may just be what the Doctor requires!

Take a look at a few of Apple"s e-Health friendly offerings, (via ReadWriteWeb.com)

Mobile Health Momentum
The iPhone has already changed the face of healthcare. Apple shared this fact at last year's iPhone OS 3.0 release and within the keynote at WWDC. The momentum that started with consumer applications has moved to forward-looking doctors and health providers. We know that it is becoming common practice for some doctors and nurses to carry both their company-issued Blackberry and their personally purchased iPhone.

There are already amazing applications in the market. AirStrip allows doctors to monitor patient vital signs and receive alerts from afar. There are now personal health records that can be carried and updated from anywhere.

Additionally, there are information-rich applications that allow nurses, doctors and patients to look up health information in real time. Last week during the Haiti tragedy, an injured individual was able to use an iPhone to treat himself using an first aid application on the iPhone.

Clinician Ready-
Apple and EPIC systems have been collaborating to release the first version of MyChartManager on the iPhone. EPIC is a leading provider of EHR in the United States, and powers systems such as Kaiser Permanente and Palo Alto Medical Foundation in the Bay Area, to name a few. The application, named Haiku was released on Jan. 13, 2010, and several health systems are in the process of testing it. It's a clear contender for the "killer app" in the hospital setting. Looking at the screenshots, it's clear that more screen real estate would be ideal - which means it may be just the right time for an iTablet-like device to emerge on the market.

It's the Apps
It is nearly certain that iPhone OS 4.0 will create a path for existing applications to "upsize" to a tablet device, and this includes size. The medical category today is already the highest-aggregate-priced category on the App Store today, and with the promise of applications inside the clinical walls, the opportunity gets much larger.

The iPhone-to-tablet combination may be the biggest reason that a tablet is successful in the market, since the entire iPhone developer community will be able to deliver on this new platform. With Apple's success in having an integrated OS that shares core libraries across both the Mac and iPhone, it is likely that a table device will also connect with apps from both the iPhone and the Mac.

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