Intensive Care Gets Safer With the Help of Tablets

September 27, 2012
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As most of us know the intensive care unit (ICU) is critically important at any American hospital. One wrong decision literally can mean the difference between life and death.

As most of us know the intensive care unit (ICU) is critically important at any American hospital. One wrong decision literally can mean the difference between life and death.

ipad-doctorTo combat and lessen these errors, The Johns Hopkins Hospitalin Baltimore will devote an $8.9 million grant to improve processes and technology within their intensive care units. The facility is dedicating the funds to arm patients with iPads and other tablets so that the patient and/or their family can log how their caretakers are performing on 250 points of care. The tablets will also allow patients and families to hold videoconferences with their physicians.

Because of the complexity of cases in the ICU, there’s room for many errors, including hospital-acquired infections, which have been found to quadruple ICU deaths. Providing this new type of communication between doctor, patients and family can ultimately help reduce harmful errors.

Many hospital ICUs have used as many as 100 pieces of technology to improve their processes. The only catch is that they’re all made by dozens of vendors and aren’t well integrated with each other. By using an iPad or standard tablet, many physicians and directors believe processes within the ICU can be improved, which can both save money for the hospital and improve patient safety and their experience at the same time.

This is just another example of how mobile and technology are upgrading healthcare to save more lives and prevent more mistakes.