A look at some of the smartest technology for physicians today - or in the near future.
Here's a look at six great devices - some available today and some in the near future - that take practicing medicine and engaging with patients to the next level. Â If you want to learn more read "Smart Technology at Your Medical Practice."
Powered by digital pen maker Anoto and EHR vendor NextGen Healthcare Information Systems, this pen allows physicians to document by writing directly onto a computer or tablet screen, or inputting information using their voice. Providers can switch between voice dictation and handwriting easily during patient encounters, by simply tapping the pen. By selecting its built-in microphone in voice mode, users dictate into the pen and the recorded audio is automatically associated with the correct patient, form, and field. Available now; pricing varies.
This high-tech wristband, a sequel to the popular UP model, can help patients track how they sleep, move, and eat - and ultimately make lifestyle improvements. It does this by measuring data and connecting via Bluetooth to a wireless device to give the user real-time feedback. Available now; this device retails for $149.99.
This next-generation stethoscope Bluetooth technology wirelessly transfers heart, lung, and other body sounds to software for further analysis. Users can even store recordings and patient notes electronically and send them to colleagues for second opinions. Clinicians can also play recordings at slow speeds to hear sounds more clearly, and save recordings for comparison to future auscultations. Available now; this device retails for $545.60.
This smart check-in tablet does more than your usual consumer version: In addition to taking in patient data to save front-office staff the hassle of filing paperwork, the PhreesiaPad also verifies insurance in real-time, automatically calculates patient copay, accepts credit and debit card payments, and administers, validates, and scores clinical risk assessments. Available now; pricing varies.
Google Glass is essentially a wearable set of glasses with an optical head-mounted display that allows users to do all sorts of things they would do on a regular tablet or full-size machine. For physicians, this potentially means getting patient information sent to their glasses right before a visit, recording a visit without using a recording device, or taking photos of patients - for example, taking snapshots of skin lesions to see how they are healing - to monitor progress. Units currently cost about $1,500, but Google Glass is still in testing phases and not available yet for mass-market purchase.
Created by healthcare startup iNeedMD, the EKG glove is an alternative to the standby, electrode-based test. It slips onto a physician's hand so all they have to do is touch the patient's chest, and then remove their hand (the glove stays put for up to 48 hours). The glove can then send a signal wirelessly to your computing device of choice. The glove is currently approved by the FDA but is not yet available to the mass market.