The iPad has become a fixture in healthcare that simplifies the lives of doctors and nurses. It turns out that the iPad can improve the quality of care patients receive if it is used as a mechanism to record a patient’s medical history and/or as a way of monitoring that patient’s progress on follow-up visits.
Department of Veterans Affairs is no stranger iOS devices or to developing custom apps to help deliver key services to veterans and their families. In fact, the VA’s CIO last year said that the agency needed to become “iPad friendly” in order to effectively support the agency’s physicians, nurse, and other medical staff and an iOS pilot program was launched earlier this year.
More recently, the VA has been looking for ways that mobile technology can help homeless veterans find food, shelter, and other critical resources. To achieve that goal and raise awareness of veteran homelessness across the country (one out of six homeless adults in America is a veteran), the VA has teamed up with JBJ Soul Foundation, the non-profit charity created by music legend Jon Bon Jovi to launch an iOS/Android app contest called Project REACH.
Health related iOS apps are proliferating quickly in the App Store. While the most popular health related apps tend to be focused on diet, exercise, and stress relief, there are some other fast growing trends that show how the iPhone and iPad transforming the healthcare experience for consumers.
According to MobiHealthNews, which provides an annual assessment of the market for mobile apps related to medicine, health, and fitness, three new trends are emerging that could significantly reshape our experience of healthcare.
Seeking to challenge the iPad’s ongoing success in the healthcare field, Panasonic has announced an updated version of Toughbook tablet for doctors offices and hospitals. The update is the latest for Toughbook product line that Panasonic introduced in 2008.
The 10-inch screen size is about the only thing in the new Toughbook CF-H2 Health tablet offers that is similar to the iPad. The Toughbook is a Windows 7 tablet powered by an Intel Core i5 processor that relies on a 320GB hard drive rather than flash memory for storage (though a 128 GB SSD is available as a custom build option). It weighs in at a whopping 1.58 kg (3.48 pounds) – more than double the weight of the new iPad.
The Toughbook, which will ship next month, will have an entry-level price of €1,898 (approximately $2,330). That’s more than four times the cost of an entry-level new iPad and just shy of six times the cost of the entry-level iPad 2.
The uses for Apple’s iPhone and iPad in healthcare seem to be growing by leaps and bounds. The latest field of medicine to take note of the power that iOS devices offer doctors and healthcare providers is ophthalmology. A new study shows that the iPhone may make a better tool when reviewing certain types of ophthalmology images that a standard desktop PC workstation.
What’s truly amazing is that the iPhone used in the study was a four-year-old iPhone 3G.