One of the more subdued features that will launch with iOS 6 is called “Guided Access”. This feature allows users to restrict touch and hardware buttons on the iPad.

The feature is aimed at students and children with disabilities such as autism to remain on task and focused on content. Basically, enabling a child with autism to focus on one app, and not accidentally go to other apps.

Although this feature is aimed at those with disabilities, it has a multitude of other purposes that Physicians in private practice could find useful.

I have private practice peers who would love the ability to give the iPad to their patients in the waiting room so they could fill out their forms, or even better, learn about some particular disease pathology.

I know of case examples where this is already being done, but most of my peers are worried they cannot successfully restrict the iPad when it’s given to their patients — and instead of using it for medical purposes, they will find a way to play games or use other apps.

One of their concerns is the lack of security and access that comes with the iPad. In the current iteration of the iOS, there are ways to restrict access to apps, restrict access to making purchases, but it’s impossible to lock in on only one app.

With Guided Access, Physicians would be able to secure the iPad and feel comfortable giving it to patients in the waiting room, or in their patient rooms.

Physicians could pull up a diabetes teaching app, lock the app, and give it to patients while they are waiting. This would enable the patient to get a better understanding of their disease pathology, potentially saving the physician time — but also improving care.

Reference: Apple