Emerging Technologies and Their Uses in Healthcare – Health System Example

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"Emerging Technologies and Their Uses in Healthcare"  is a wonderful example of a paper on the health system. The importance of securely maintaining Protected Health Information (PHI) cannot be overemphasized because it not only prevents critical patient information from getting to the wrong hands but also helps build trust between patients and their caregivers. Technological advancement has led to the use of tablets, smartphones, laptops, and computers in collecting patient information indispensable. Mobile devices are portable and easy to use and therefore it’ s imperative for health practitioners to use them appropriately without losing or exposing them to third parties.

By properly storing PHI, caregivers protect their facilities from unnecessary lawsuits which could arise when the police, relatives of the patients, insurance or social workers come across confidential information without the authority of patients. Patient information should never be given out, be it for research, learning, audit or even commissioning without the consent of the patient (Ling, 2004).   Mobile devices have been preferred by medical practitioners and hospitals because they have software that has improved the quality of information required for the treatment of patients.

They also better memory, small batteries, and an effective operating system. With mobile devices, doctors and nurses can download medical apps that help them perform specified functions. Users of iPad, iPod, and iPhone, through Apple tunes, are able to shop and download these on online markets, this enhances availability (Ling, 2004). Usually, users download an App based on the cost of such applications with free versions being popular but then upgrading to purchased versions whenever the need arises.   For instance, use mobile devices assist in getting information easily and quickly thereby reducing time, help in the management of patients and monitoring.

Mobile devices also help in making decisions. Examples of commonly used mobile devices by health practitioners include smartphones, large memories, cameras with high resolution and tablet computers. In a hospital, mobile devices are essential for communication, either through calling, video conferencing, and texting thereby increasing access to information. Prior to the availability of mobile devices, the information could only be accessed through stationed computers which were immobile and inefficient. Lastly, mobile devices can be used in the storage of important information about patients.

To improve the efficiency of service delivery, the information about the patients should be stored in electronic form because it can be easier to retrieve whenever the need arises. Protecting Mobile Devices and Information they contain Given the important contribution of the tablets, smartphones, and laptops to the healthcare providers, they need to be properly used. Meaning, they should be protected to ensure that they do not get lost. Also, if this is done, the information stored in them can not be lost or accessed by unauthorized persons. Basically, there are very many ways of doing this. Mobile devices with PHI can be protected in two ways; internally by protecting it from internal risks like viruses by downloading Apps from safe sites and protecting devices from external threats like theft.

Internal threats can lead to corruption of information making them unfit for consumption. For example, downloading Apps from unsafe sites can crush the device. Mobile devices can be protected from computer viruses by installing a suitable virus that clears out the viruses every time they attack the device.

In addition, users need to do proper research about the credibility of sites they do research on and the safety of the Apps before downloading (Chwan-Hwa & Irwin, 2009). Externally, mobile devices need to be kept safely so that they are not stolen and are not accessed by unauthorized people. They should be kept in secure cabins which cannot be broken in and in cases when they are given to other people, a properly documented handover should be carried out so that it is possible to establish who is holding the device at a particular time.

This ensures that mobile devices are always in responsible hands. There needs to be the use of passwords and Personal Identification Numbers (PINs) in any device used in the healthcare facility. This is a good idea because it can help in securing these devices from being accessed by any other authorized party. Besides, in order to help in preventing any unnecessary access to information from these devices when misplaced, the user needs to install and enable disabling and remote wiping apps. When this is properly done, it will be possible for the user to erase data from a lost device so as not to be accessed by strangers because it can contravene the confidentiality standards of such information (Chwan-Hwa & Irwin, 2009). In addition, the user needs to protect the information stored in these dives by installing and constantly updating anti-virus software.

When used, it can help in protecting the information stored in the device from being attacked by viruses, worms, and spyware. Moreover, the information stored in the devices should be protected by deleting them before discarding and replacing the device itself.

If this is not done, the stored data can be accessed by unauthorized parties. Lastly, the device should be protected by failing to install file-sharing apps (Singer & Friedman, 2006). Many people can abuse such a privilege and instead use it as an opportunity to get access to stored patients’ information even if they are not allowed to do so. Importance of Using Mobile Devices in Managing Chronic Illnesses                       Mobile devices should be used in the management of healthcare. It is an improved technology that can help in storing all the necessary information about the pate.

Therefore, when used in the treatment of chronic illnesses like diabetes, it can help in ensuring that high quality and efficient service is provided at all times. This is due to the fact that they can help the practitioner to easily retrieve information about the history, family background, and diagnosis and treatments given to the patients in the past. Thus, it can be possible to make rational and informed decisions about the right thing to do to the patient (Istepanian, R.

et al. , 2005). Hence, if properly used, such chronic diseases can be handled so well without facing many challenges. Information management is a significant aspect of healthcare management that every facility needs to be concerned about.

References

Ling, R. (2004). The mobile connection: The cell phone's impact on society London: Morgan

Kaufmann.

Istepanian, R. et al. (eds.) (2005). M-Health: Emerging Mobile Health Systems. Springer.

Chwan-Hwa, P. &Irwin, D. (2009) Introduction to Computer Networks and Cybersecurity. Boca

Raton: CRC Press.

Singer, P. & Friedman, A. (2006) Cybersecurity and Cyberwar: What Everyone Needs to Know.

Oxford: Oxford: Oxford University Press.

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