Smartphones have transformed the way healthcare providers communicate, and these mobile devices are poised to revolutionise the way hospitals deliver care in 2014 and beyond. Texting long ago surpassed voice calls as the favoured method of communication among the general population, and it is rapidly gaining favour in hospitals.
Doctors and nurses already exchange patient related texts on their own personal phones at many facilities, and as more hospitals issue mobile devices to employees, the ability to communicate quickly and access and update patient data on the move has become a critical function.
Deploying mobile, flexible, and reliable IT tools to caregivers is a top priority for provider organisations that not only need to meet new regulatory and technology requirements, but want to do so efficiently. At Cedars-Sinai Hospital in California, for example, the combination of smartphones and a new software solution to help prioritise alarms resulted in faster response times for emergency conditions, and a 50 percent reduction in overhead pages. Laboratory values are received 10 minutes faster and nurses are able to spend more time at the bedsides of patients who require their attention, according to a case study published by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation.