For years, computers in healthcare served a mostly administrative function. As the technology grew and regulations changed, computers became more and more common in other parts of medical facilities. Today, computers are used everywhere from patient bedsides, medical carts, nurse stations, laboratories, and operating rooms. In this article, we explain some of the most common applications in which healthcare personnel would use computers.
Medical and Patient Data
When examining patients, doctors and nurses can take notes and prescribe treatments at the point of care. This eliminates a lot of potential for mistakes from personnel trying to read handwriting or trying to remember the situation later on. It also adds efficiency because doctors and nurses can enter pertinent information on the spot.
Medical Imaging and Equipment
Medical PCs are often used to control medical devices that perform CT Scans, ultrasounds, MRIs, or blood tests. They can even be integrated into the equipment itself, saving space. Additionally, doctors and nurses are able to show patients their X-Rays and other images or videos to explain their condition and treatment.
In hospitals, lives can be saved by machine monitoring. Computers now can control lab equipment, blood pressure monitors, heart rate monitors, and other important medical equipment, as well as notify staff if something is not right. In some cases, computers can aid doctors in procedures, making situations more safe and convenient for both the patient and the personnel. While computerized equipment is monitoring a patient, it is also collecting the data constantly so it can be accessed in the future if needed.
Computers in the healthcare field have vastly increased the amount of knowledge that medical staff can access. Doctors can consult medical databases to learn more about a specific disease or treatment plan. Computers can run simulations to try and find causes and cures for diseases and work with other machines to increase the chance of success.
Communication and Telemedicine
Healthcare staff lead hectic lives. Using computers to communicate adds efficiency and simplicity to their jobs. Instead of taking messages or leaving notes, they can chat in real-time so important information is relayed when needed.
Telemedicine is an option available now that wasn’t previously. Doctors are able to communicate via computers and smart phones with colleagues from all over the world, and patients in rural areas can receive a diagnosis without travelling to a hospital. In the case of disaster areas, telemedicine can greatly improve care when it wouldn’t otherwise be available, like during the Haiti earthquake or in war zones.
Knowing what medications are in stock is crucial for patient treatment. Therefore, keeping inventory lists up to date is very important. If a doctor prescribes something that is not in stock without knowing, they could slow down recovery. Instead, using a computer to track inventory would alert the staff immediately when something is wrong so they can change their treatment plan if needed.
Many drugs are highly regulated and must be carefully tracked to ensure that they aren’t being abused or wrongly prescribed. Computers can log inventory and keep records of a certain drug’s history to be pulled up later if necessary, and eliminates human error.
Computers Made for Healthcare
In addition to all these benefits, computers still need to be specially designed for use in healthcare facilities. Medical certifications, antibacterial enclosures, and devices that are easily cleaned are imperative to hygiene and safety in these organizations. Just placing a consumer-grade computer without these features into a hospital could ultimately cause more problems than it would help.
Teguar’s medical PCs are all UL/EN 60601 certified and most have antibacterial properties to prevent the growth of germs. These computers add significant advantages to healthcare facilities in many different areas and make the lives of medical staff more efficient and recovering patient’s lives safer. Using a designated medical computer will also save money, since they last much longer than consumer-grade PCs and are built for nonstop operation.
Teguar has medical computers ranging from box PCs, to tablets, to all-in-one computers that are ideal in any medical setting. Contact us to learn more about which options are best for your organization.