Trends in Mobile Computing in Healthcare

November 1, 2003. A recent comprehensive report produced by Spyglass Consulting discusses the current state of mobile computing within the healthcare industry. It identifies the market drivers, trends, opportunities and challenges to using mobile computing devices and healthcare applications at the point of care.

Gregg Malkary, Managing Director, Spyglass Consulting Group and the author of this report states: "Mobile computing in healthcare is poised to revolutionize the way medicine is practiced at the point of care. Mobile devices enable clinicians to access patient information quickly, efficiently and securely from any location and at any time."

What is the market opportunity for mobile computing?

The total revenues for healthcare mobile devices, applications and services were approximately $50 million in 2002. This market is anticipated to grow significantly with a compound annual growth rate of 120 percent to $1.2 billion in 2006

Market forecast for mobile devices, applications and services.


The market can be divided into three distinct market segments

•Knowledge-based solutions
•Legacy systems integration
•Enterprise systems integration

Knowledge-based solutions. This segment is defined by the use of mobile computing devices for accessing drug information databases, medical reference
manuals, medical calculators and educational materials.

Legacy systems integration. This segment is characterized by point solutions that solve a specific task or business process and require tight integration with
the back office clinical systems. This segment is expected to grow the fastest over the next four years because departmental systems are already in place and store much of the critical patient information required by clinicians. The applications developed within this segment will drive the need and the adoption of mobile computing within the healthcare industry. These applications include e-prescribing, charge capture and coding, automated documentation, patient management and tracking, and lab entry and viewing.

Enterprise systems integration. This segment represents a significant step forward for the mobile clinician. Clinicians have a more comprehensive set of
integrated applications that are capable of accessing a broader and deeper amount of clinical and financial information located throughout the enterprise.
These applications include electronic medical records, computerized physician order entry, and clinical decision support. This market segment is not
expected to take off until 2006 because of the relatively low penetration of enterprise-wide computing systems at hospitals across the nation.

The report: "Healthcare without Bounds - Trends in Mobile Computing", is copyright Spyglass Consulting, who have kindly given us permission to reproduce this report in part here. The entire report is available for $1,195 (USD) form the Spyglass Consulting website.

Gregg Malkary can be reached by email


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