Thursday, December 13, 2012

Medical Records Going Mobile

With mobile devices becoming immensely popular, information can now be easily made available to clinicians and other healthcare professionals. The Android mobile device is a versatile Smartphone that functions both as a phone and a computer. It is a great option for physicians who can conveniently record their notes and check out patient data whenever they need it.

Medical Mobile
The prospect of having patients’ medical records at physicians’ fingertips is indeed a great boon. The records contain all vital health information of the patient and enable the physician to provide quick and effective treatment. How can a physician access medical records via an Android phone? Android apps available now allow physicians to access patient records through an account authorized by the company. The medical records are not public and remain confidential. The physician who has an authorized account can search the patient by name, or scan the barcode on the patient’s wristband to obtain the required information.

Healthcare professionals will find mobile devices such as Smartphones, iPods and tablets useful in other ways too:

• They can monitor the patient via special mobile apps

• View scans and X-rays from the wards, from home or during operations

• Locate important medical data online or through clinical apps

Accessing medical records via mobile devices is gaining popularity and it is expected that major hospitals in the U.S will embrace this strategy because of the convenience and confidentiality ensured. Easy access to medical records can even help save a patient’s life.

Many medical institutions have already started utilizing tablets and Smartphones to provide healthcare professionals access to medical records. Major EHR providers such as Epic have introduced mobile versions of their electronic health record system. Others utilize software such as VMWare and Citrix to access their EHR’s virtualized desktop version.

When patient records go mobile, there is the concern of confidentiality and security. The Department of Health and Human Services has issued guidelines for maintaining HIPAA compliant portable computing devices. Many scenarios for conducting risk assessment are outlined in this.

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