The Johns Hopkins ABX Guide now available for Android, let the party begin

I received an email recently notifying me of the availability of The Johns Hopkins ABX Guide for the Android OS. I remember using the Hopkins ABX guide on my Palm Pilot many years ago. The website has always been a great source of information and having it in a mobile platform is great, especially for … Read more

“What’d I miss?” – The week of December 5

It’s been a busy week, and pretty much all my attention was focused on the ASHP Midyear event in Anaheim, California. Of course as a pharmacist that’s where my focus should have been, but that doesn’t mean that the rest of the world stopped moving. Here are some of the things I found interesting this week:

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First Impressions – Lenovo X201 Tablet PC

My Lenovo X201 Tablet finally arrived and I couldn’t be happier. It’s a nice tablet PC, and I’m more convinced than ever before that I made the right decision by going with Lenovo.

I’ve used several different laptops and tablet PCs and can honestly say that I’ve never been more impressed with a machine, not HP, not Dell. I’m sure there are fans of both manufacturers, but that’s my personal opinion. Take it for what it’s worth.

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The outlook for mobile apps in healthcare looks bright

mobihealthnews: “The market opportunity for mobile apps in the healthcare enterprise is currently $100 million, according to a recent report from Chilmark Research. Because of the rapid evolution of mobile devices, physician demand, and the healthcare enterprise’s need to improve quality and efficiencies, the market will climb to $1.7 billion in three years time, Chilmark Research predicts.” – In case you missed it, that’s billion, with a “b”.

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Will the new crop of slate tablets be good for healthcare?

I recently read an article in Laptop Magazine about the most anticipated tablets scheduled to hit the market over the next several months. Some things caught my attention.

First, all the tablets listed were slate models and offered a variety of screen sizes. The smallest screen listed was 7 inches, while the largest was listed at 12 inches. Screen size is important to me so I was glad to see that the idea of larger devices wasn’t completely dead. The second thing was the variety of operating systems offered. Windows 7 and Android were prominent, but a couple of the tablet descriptions didn’t include an operating system. Based on the screen shots and a little web surging it appears that some of the devices may use proprietary operating systems. We’ll have to wait and see. And finally, almost all the tablets listed were clearly aimed at the consumer. In fact the only “enterprise” tablet that made the list was the Cisco Cius. The Cius is an interesting device as it will use the Android OS, a smaller 7 inch screen, 802.11n, 3G and 4G, and Bluetooth. I’m sure the company is hoping to leverage its VoIP and data systems against the needs of business users. In my opinion the Cius would provide significant functionality and potential for increased productivity to those businesses that already employ Cisco phone or data services. It makes sense to integrate tablets into a system that already uses the same infrastructure.

The two tablets that were conspicuously absent from the list were the BlackBerry PlayBook and the HP Slate which are both being marketed as enterprise devices. I love the idea of the PlayBook because it offers real-time video conferencing like the Cius and the ability to pair it with a BlackBerry smartphone to access online content. The potential to tether a smartphone to a tablet is quite appealing to me.

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Cool Technology for Pharmacy – CareSpeak

Texting is a popular method of communication for nearly all walks of life nowadays. I fought the texting bug for a long time until I finally discovered that it was a quick and easy way to communicate with my wife and daughters throughout the day.

It was only a matter of time before texting made its way into healthcare as a viable option as a way to remind patients to take their medications. Texting has been used to increase medication compliance in certain disease states such as diabetes and pediatric liver transplant. This isn’t the case for all patient demographics as text reminders did not improve compliance with women taking oral contraceptives.

Nonetheless, the idea of using text messages to encourage patients to take their medication is the goal of CareSpeak and their line of available applications: MediM Alerts, Diabetes Monitor and MediM Alerts+.

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Dell Streak to be integrated into healthcare solutions, Yippee!

Dell announced today that it is going to integrate its Android-based mobile device, the Streak, into its healthcare solutions. The idea of a company the size of Dell working on something like this is truly exciting as it brings credibility to the Android platform in healthcare. In addition, you know the project is going to receive serious consideration and resources as Dell wouldn’t be willing to dump millions of dollars into something like this if they didn’t believe it would succeed. They clearly believe in the future of the Android OS. I would love to be involved in a project like this as it brings together so many fascinating technologies. In fact, I think I’ll dust off my resume and send a copy over to Dell. They’re bound to need a pharmacist on staff for something like this. Right?

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