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ME patients comfortable with mobile tech in care

January 30, 2018

Seventy-seven per cent of patients in the Middle East feel positive about clinicians using mobile devices in their care while 57 per cent of patients currently use wearables to track their personal health metrics, a report said.

Meanwhile, 95 per cent of patients are willing to share their health metrics, collected from wearables, with clinicians, added the report titled “Future of Healthcare: 2022 Hospital Vision Study” from Zebra Technologies Corporation, a market leader in rugged mobile computers, barcode scanners and barcode printers.

Other key findings of the Middle East study:

Mobiles are reducing costs and improving care quality

• 56 per cent of hospitals say that mobile technology is reducing the cost of patient care

• 70 per cent of hospitals say that mobile technology is improving the quality of patient care

• 39 per cent of nurses report reduced medication administration errors as a result of using mobile technology

• 99 per cent of nurses plan to access ‘predictive analytics’ on mobiles, by 2022

Mobiles will become increasingly important

• Almost all bedside nurses (98 per cent) and physicians (97 per cent), and 96 per cent of pharmacists are expected to be using mobiles by 2022 (currently, only around 44 per cent of physicians use mobiles)

• The main ways in which mobiles will transform healthcare are through remote patient monitoring, telehealth and artificial intelligence

• 89 per cent of respondents believe there will be more use of ‘real time location’ services, to improve staff workflows, in the future

Globally, 72 per cent of experts in the healthcare sector say that mobile devices are improving the quality of patient care, giving clinicians actionable intelligence at the bedside with increasing time with patients and reducing errors, the report said.

The powerful benefits of clinical mobility are fuelling an increase in adoption of mobile technologies at every level of care, it added.

The research identified the rising adoption of clinical mobility – the use of mobile devices such as handheld mobile computers, tablets, cordless barcode scanners and mobile printers – in hospitals around the world.

According to survey respondents, nearly all hospitals estimate that mobile devices will be used at the bedside by nurses (97 per cent) and physicians (98 per cent) by 2022, but also increasingly by other members of the care team such as pharmacists, lab technicians, radiologists, and patient transport professionals.

The study also highlighted how patients perceive the rise of clinical mobility with nearly eight-in-ten survey respondents feeling positive about mobile tools being used to improve their care.

Key survey findings

• Clinical mobility is rapidly becoming the global standard for patient care: Zebra’s 2022 Hospital Vision Study identified the rising adoption of clinical mobile solutions across all disciplines by 2022. Interestingly, this growth includes areas where mobility is already widely used (bedside nurses rising from 65 to 95 per cent), as well as a major increase across other areas such as pharmacist and pharmacy technicians (from 42 to 96 per cent), lab technicians (from 52 to 96 per cent), and intensive care nurses (from 38 to 93 per cent).

• Study highlights reduction in preventable errors as key benefit: Surveyed nursing managers and IT decision-makers expect clinical mobility to reduce errors in areas including medication administration (61 per cent) and specimen collection labelling (52 per cent).

• Mobile technologies allow clinical staff to spend more time at a patient’s bedside: By 2022, 91 per cent of nurses are expected to access electronic health records (EHRs), medical and drug databases (92 per cent), and lab diagnostic results (88 per cent) using a mobile device, reducing time that must be spent away from patients.

• Communications are expected to improve due to rising clinical mobility adoption: Nearly Seven-in-ten of surveyed nurse managers credit clinical mobility with improving staff communication and collaboration as well as the quality of patient care, while 64 per cent of surveyed IT decision-makers identify nurse-to-physician communications as a top area for improvement.

• Clinical mobility will be augmented with real-time location information to streamline workflows: Real-Time Location Systems (RTLS) will be used to locate everything from equipment, supplies and pharmaceuticals to patients and staff. This visibility will allow administrators to increase bed availability, staff workflow, and safety.

• Improved data streams integrated through handheld mobile technology are expected to improve detection and notification of life-threatening conditions: By 2022, 98 per cent of surveyed IT decision-makers expect predictive analytics and early notification for life- threatening conditions, such as sepsis and hospital-acquired infection, will be sent to clinicians’ mobile devices.

• Patients are aware of the benefits of clinical mobility and becoming more active participants in the delivery of their healthcare: The majority of surveyed patients (77 per cent) expressed positivity about clinician usage of mobile technologies to improve the quality of their care.

Wayne Miller, healthcare director EMEA at Zebra Technologies said: “Clinical mobility is a highly transformative, powerful trend which is having a significant impact on improving the quality of patient care around the world.”

“The sheer number of nurses and IT managers that replied to our survey to say how much mobility has improved their work speaks to a clear trend of better mobile solutions adoption in healthcare. The fact that patients themselves are encouraged and enthusiastic about mobility shows it has a growing association with receiving the best standard of treatment.

“At Zebra, we believe clinical mobility is essential for the healthcare industry becoming more efficient and effective while enabling healthcare professionals the best means to help people,” he added.

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