Apple’s iPads Could Replace Paper Charts in U.K. Hospitals

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Apple’s (NASDAQ:AAPL) iPads may one day become a crucial component of the United Kingdom’s National Health Service, as some of the hospitals there explore the use of tablets through a trial program. According to Computerworld UK, an “iPad-based patient monitoring system” has been developed by biomedical engineers and clinicians from the University of Oxford and the Oxford University Hospitals NHS Trust.

The new system was designed to replace handwritten observation charts and other paper-based medical records with iPads and other tablets. After a patient’s vital signs and other medical information are entered into a device, the data will provide a nurse or doctor with an “Early Warning Score.” This score will help the hospital staff to determine if a patient’s condition is deteriorating and will alert them if a patient is in need of immediate medical intervention.

Since the iPad can instantly calculate a patient’s status based on previously entered information, it will allow caregivers to more reliably keep track of multiple patients in a hospital setting. “The new system will help nurses, who work in busy, high-pressure environments, care for patients more efficiently and effectively,” said Lionel Tarassenko, a professor of electrical engineering and leader of the project, to the publication.

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