iPad Mania in Healthcare

Posted on February 15, 2011 I Written By

John Lynn is the Founder of the HealthcareScene.com blog network which currently consists of 10 blogs containing over 8000 articles with John having written over 4000 of the articles himself. These EMR and Healthcare IT related articles have been viewed over 16 million times. John also manages Healthcare IT Central and Healthcare IT Today, the leading career Health IT job board and blog. John is co-founder of InfluentialNetworks.com and Physia.com. John is highly involved in social media, and in addition to his blogs can also be found on Twitter: @techguy and @ehrandhit and LinkedIn.

The iPad has been a regular topic on EMR and EHR since last year when we first wrote about the Apple iPad EMR. While it’s normal for there to be a lot of hype around the announcement of a device like an iPad, I must admit that the hype around the device hasn’t really slowed down any.

If you’re a blogger and want your article read, all you need to do is mention your iPad and people will click through to read about it. I’m not immune to it either. Just take a look at the list of giveaways at HIMSS. If you’re not giving away an iPad, then you probably don’t belong there.

One healthcare IT vendor on a HIMSS LinkedIn thread recently said they were giving away an iPod at HIMSS. Turns out that was mistake. Of course, he meant to say they were giving away…wait for it…an iPad. Think how lucky Apple is that hundreds of iPads will be given out at the largest Healthcare IT conference on the planet (30,000 people attending). Plus, Apple didn’t even have to pay for the promotion.

With all these free iPads hitting the healthcare IT world, I wonder how many more iPads will be purchased. Now some might wait to see what the second generation iPad will look like (I wonder if some creative vendor will giveaway the second generation iPad instead of the first generation), but no doubt there’s some mythical quality to the iPad. You see someone else using it and want one. At least I do. I’m not even sure why I want one, but I do. It’s not because everyone else has one cause I like to buck trends. However, there’s just something really nice about the form factor of the iPad tied with all its apps.

The real question is how well will the iPad do in an enterprise situation. I’ve started to see stories come out talking about the challenges of IT staff in supporting and deploying large numbers of iPads in their organizations. One such story had the CEO promise everyone iPads for Christmas. Then, the CIO had the amazing challenge to distribute and support thousands of iPads in their organization. You can’t take back a Christmas gift.

Since this is an EMR and EHR site, let’s just say that from my point of view, the EMR and EHR apps for the iPad still have a ways to go. I’ll be sure to do an informal poll of all the EMR companies I talk with at HIMSS about their “iPad EMR strategy.” I’m certain that they all have one. I’ll be interested to know EMR companies various approaches.

Of course, if you don’t like to run with the popular kids, maybe you should check out the Blackberry Playbook in Healthcare. I’ve heard it’s a great device and maybe they’ll actually care about the enterprise. I’m pretty sure the iPad is positioned that they won’t care all that much about the enterprise.

If you are going to HIMSS and want to learn about my giveaway. Tomorrow, I’ll post the details on EMR and HIPAA about how to win a 42″ HDTV. That’s over 4 times as big as the iPad’s little screen.