Getting a Big Picture View of Clinical Mobility Considerations

Use this roadmap to select a mobility solution that you can be confident will meet your healthcare communication standards

Female healthcare provider uses a handheld touch computer to provide bedside care to a patient
by Wayne Miller
March 19, 2019

Implementing a clinical mobility solution is great way to improve clinician efficiency and support better patient care – 71% of hospitals identify mobile communications as a priority, which is no surprise considering that a report from The Joint Commission found that 70% of medical errors can be traced to communication breakdowns. With real-time access to patient data, the ability to collaborate with peers on a moment’s notice and the capability to effectively manage patient alarms, a mobile clinician is an empowered clinician.

However, there is a wide range of factors to consider before choosing your mobile devices and starting your rollout. These decisions can have a significant impact on the overall effectiveness of your mobile solution—from both an efficiency and patient safety perspective—not to mention its initial and ongoing costs.

Finding the right solution requires a strategic approach and a careful evaluation of your facility, workflow and processes to determine the right combination of capabilities and features.

That is why we developed this Clinical Mobility Strategy whitepaper. It explores the complexities of specifying a clinical mobility solution in different global healthcare environments and provides expert guidance on how to design and execute a mobility strategy that will best serve your facility, providers and patients, including recommended best practices. It also provides a step-by-step roadmap that you can follow to ensure you are evaluating mobile devices in real-world environments, considering the implications of utilizing mobile technology in an enterprise-setting and ultimately selecting the right devices for drive your medical applications. And that’s just the start.

Before you even consider what types of mobile devices you’ll need to implement your desired mobility solution, there’s a lot of planning to be done, and a lot of questions to answer:

- How do you want the solution to integrate with existing systems, such as your electronic health record (EHR), and your existing workflows and protocols?

- What mobile communication needs are you addressing?

- Do emergency department intake teams need to be able to communicate with emergency management services (EMS) personnel transporting patients to the hospital?

- Do nurses need to be able to communicate with both off-site doctors and other on-site personnel?

- Do you want to use devices to facilitate the completion of patient paperwork, such as registration forms?

- How will you manage alerts and alarms?

- Would your care team benefit from the ability to monitor patients’ vital signs on their mobile devices?

- What data privacy regulations and system security requirements must you comply with?

- What software will you be using for various applications? Does it require certain hardware capabilities, such as a built-in scanner?

- How will the device be disinfected? Can it even be disinfected safely?

- How will you roll out the solution to your team? And who will manage it long-term? Do you have the resources to support or do you need to invest in third-party services?

And these are just a sampling of the questions that will ultimately influence your device form factor preference and your decision to opt for enterprise devices, consumer devices or a “bring your own device” (BYOD) approach.

For example, before deploying any type of mobility solution, you’ll need to develop and publish a facility-wide policy that identifies appropriate end-user usage models for hospital and personally owned mobile devices. You’ll also need to consider training programs and a support/help system for your users. So, while the lack of initial capital outlay may make a BYOD approach appealing, it’s important to consider the total cost of ownership (TCO) over the long term. Yes, the mobile devices you select are integral to the success of your entire mobility solution. But their tangible and intangible costs will be influenced by a host of other factors, such as software compatibility, device management demands and more. This guide will help you calculate that number.

Download your free copy to get a big-picture vision of clinical mobility in practice and leverage expert tips to inform your final device decisions and solution design.

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Wayne Miller
Wayne is the Zebra lead for Healthcare solutions and works to directly improve patient care, supporting partners and end users.
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