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Cool Technology of the Week

April 15, 2011 posted by Dr. John D. Halamka

Dr. John Halamka is the chief information officer for Boston's Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center and dean for technology at Harvard Medical School.

This week's cool technology is not about any specific hardware or software, but is about a trend.

Mobile technology for healthcare is fast replacing desktops and laptops in many settings.

As of this morning, there are 1600 iPhones and 300 iPads connected to the BIDMC network, using our administrative and clinical applications. These were all purchased by individual clinicians and staff to enhance their productivity. All we do centrally is provide the server components to access applications (web servers, citric, active synch) and enforce mobile device security polices.

Mobile devices for healthcare are becoming increasingly important at the bedside, in the home, and in hostile environments.

Here's a YouTube video illustrating how the Medical Communications for Combat Casualty Care (MC4) handheld is used to record patient encounters on the battlefield.

Given the increasing prevalence of Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI) in the military due to powerful explosive devices the Army is using handhelds to track and treat personnel with TBI.

The Army is piloting iPads/iPhones/iPods, Android devices, and Windows Smartphones for training.

There's speculation that the military may issue a smartphone to every solider.

Some IT leaders consider mobile computing to be a burden and distraction - a wild west of client devices brought in by customers demanding new services. The reality is that CIOs should develop a mobile device strategy assuming that tablets, smartphones and laptops will replace desktops in many settings. By defining security policies and providing server side applications, IT organizations can become mobile device enablers and leverage the momentum created by users who are investing their own time and resources to make them work.

Mobile devices purchased and supported by users, connected to standardized central services. That's cool!

Republished with permission from Dr. Halamka’s blog at

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June 2, 2011

3 Shortcuts to Charting Notes in AHLTA-T

April 5, 2011 posted by Leann Micheals

Leann Micheals, MC4's clinical applications consultant since 2004, is a nurse practitioner. She travels to theater and garrison training events to help medical personnel use MC4 systems.

While I was in Iraq in 2010 to assist with the Tele-behavioral Health Initiative, I showed Lt. Col. Raphael Semidei and other providers how to organize and use shortcuts for patient documentation. They enable providers to spend more time treating patients and less time trying to locate commonly used diagnoses and procedures. These tips work best in clinics that see similar injuries and illnesses.

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