Pharmacy could use the Palm Pre

There is an interesting little article in this month’s issue of Hospital Pharmacy (not available online yet – volume 44(5), pp 429-430, May 2009) entitled “The Palm Pre: A Beginning of an Ending?” The author, Brent Fox, has been writing articles on Palm powered devices (PDAs) for several years. In the article he address the upcoming release of the new Palm Pre , a smartphone with slick new hardware and software that is supposed to compete with the iPhone and BlackBerry devices.
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How medical [or pharmacy] students can get into Health IT

Healthcareguy.com: “If you’re a medical [or pharmacy] student who is also interested in information technology, there’s a great way to make both your passions meet and make a career out of it. Healthcare IT is a field that’s growing rapidly, more so with the advent of handheld smart devices that are making the sharing of information extremely simple. As a medical [or pharmacy] student, you have the advantage of being knowledgeable in the field, knowledge that you can apply to your new career.” Health care information technology is growing rapidly, and I think health care professionals have a unique perspective on how to design and implement the very systems they use on a daily basis.  It’s a good fit for me anyway.

Special report on health care and technology

Economist.com: I’m not sure how I missed this article, but it is a must read for anyone interested in health care and technology. The contents of the special report include:

Back it up, sir. Back it up.

When it comes to backing up data I feel a little like the Featherduster in Beauty and the Beast when she says [to Lumiere]…”I’ve been burnt by you before!”

I have several back-up solutions that I use based on my location. My primary machine at work is a Dell Latitude D520. I prefer a laptop for many reasons and do not have a desktop machine at work. My data is automatically backed up to the network. Because I’ve lived through a couple of hard drive (HD) melt downs, I like to keep an up to date image of my laptop around just in case. A Maxtor OneTouch 4 Plus 1 TB drive with Norton Ghost does the trick. I get a complete image of my laptop every Thursday at 4:00pm.
Continue reading Back it up, sir. Back it up.

iPhone as a mobile healthcare device?

Apple.com: “A community medical center near Philadelphia, Doylestown Hospital relies on a mobile workforce of 360 independent physicians to provide a highly responsive healing environment for thousands of patients. Those physicians stay connected 24/7 to colleagues and hospital staff with their first responder: Apple iPhone 3G. With iPhone, doctors get access to patients’ vital stats, medical reference applications, and breaking health alerts to provide collaborative and efficient patient care.” The article goes on to describe how the iPhone has physicians linked to the hospital’s exchange server and also allows them access to the hospital’s electronic medical records system (MEDITECH Client/Server 6.0) via the phone’s Safari browser. The mobile access certainly doesn’t have to be from an iPhone, but the popularity of the device has certainly sent creative minds in the right direction.

First AGPS-Enabled Asthma Inhaler for Landmark Research Program

Newsguide.us: “US-based GPS product design firm, SiliconSky GPS, designs and develops a GPS-enabled asthma inhaler that will help a cutting edge epidemiology researcher to better understand asthma triggers. Our client needed the medical device to be compact enough for convenient daily use. To achieve that end, it took efficient circuit design and meticulous 3D modeling to fit the electronics, battery and antennae into a package the size of a Zippo lighter.” The use of technology to gather important data during studies is not only practical, but an important concept that can be extended to issues surrounding medication compliance in general.