The iPad is a hit with consumers. It's also a hit with physicians, and that may prove to be a boon for the adoption of EHRs.
An estimated 22 percent of U.S. physicians were using iPads by the end of 2010, according to Chilmark Research analysts. In a February 2011 survey by health marketing firm Aptilon, four out of five physicians said they plan to buy an iPad this year.
Physicians at various Memphis hospitals and health systems are extolling the virtues of iPads. One of the criticisms of EHRs is that physicians and nurses turn their backs on patients while entering data in a computer in the waiting room. With the iPad, the physician doesn't have to deal with unwieldy hardware. The inobtrusiveness (size, weight and look) of the iPad is winning over clinicians. It's truly mobile, allowing clinicians to move easily from examining room to examining room to office. So no need to push those computers on wheels, or COWs, either.
Also, imagine the joy patients who own iPads experience when they see their physicians and nurses using iPads. They know the benefits and convenience of these mobile devices.
When the iPad is connected to the healthcare provider's EHR and clinicians can seamlessly enter data that will be input into the EHR and pull up patient information from the EHR system while in the waiting room, both patient and physician understand the power and convenience of both mobile device and EHR system. And once developers create clinical apps for the iPad, expect an even greater adoption and adoration.
EHR vendors should be thanking Apple for creating a device that makes the adoption of EHRs a desirable endeavor.
Patty Enrado blogs regularly at EHRWatch.com.