One of the most important apps for healthcare providers might not be a medical app after all, rather a business app, called Citrix Receiver for iPad. This app allows your to have secure access to virtual desktops, applications, and data – those of you who have accessed your hospitals electronic health record when off campus are using this type of software. Hospital systems can use the Citrix app to access their own servers and desktops, as shown in the above video, and display key information on their iPad. The data can be accessed as long as you have a Wi-Fi or a 3G connection, allowing you to become mobile.
This app is one of the main reasons a Visalia, California hospital is ordering 100 iPads for its healthcare providers. The hospital system, The Kaweah Delta Health Care District, will use the iPads to view radiology images, ECG results, and other key results. They feel the iPad will be especially useful for their mobile healthcare workers, such as hospice and home health nurses. The above video also shows uses for the device within the hospital setting.
Nick Volosin, director of technical services, and the one in charge of implementing the iPads, makes it clear the iPad isn’t being used because of the “wow factor”. Rather, it makes fiscal and functional sense. The iPad’s battery is significantly longer than many of the laptops currently under use, and with the Citrix virtual desktop software, it can perform the key functions required for healthcare use.
He goes on to make the fiscal argument for the iPad: From a cost standpoint its significantly cheaper than other touch screen medical tablets, that can cost up to $3,000.
Battery life, cost, and ability to have a virtual desktop on the iPad appear to be the 3 key drivers of iPad implementation in healthcare right now. Many in healthcare will be watching this deployment of more than 100 iPads in the medical field and taking note.
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