In part I of this article I discussed the impact one hospital found when mothers who had just given birth were unable to visit their newborn babies who may be in a Pediatric or Neonatal Intensive Care Unit for one reason or another. Sometimes it is the mother who is incapable of being able to move to the baby’s location due to surgery or it may be the baby is isolated for one reason or another. One particular hospital began using i-pads to give moms the ability to see and hear their child, thereby easing some of their concern and anxiousness. Another program developed on a similar premise, provides a parent who has to work and can’t be with their child the ability to see the infant through the benefit of hospital i-pads. I will discuss this unique program in a moment, but I want to first mention my concerns about the possibility of i-pad theft from hospitals that use the technology. While the benefits associated with using mobile medical devices such as i-pads and tablets are enormous, I am also aware of the strong possibility of these devices being targeted by thieves. By setting up Checkpoint Classic N10 electronic article surveillance antenns at building entrances and exits and placing Alpha Thunder Tags on all devices, medical centers can minimize the risk of i-pad theft and the impact that would have on such programs.
When placed at building entrances and exits and even access points to public places which would include restrooms, Checkpoint Classic N10 antennas can pick up the radio frequency emitted from Alpha Thunder Tags. Tags that have been placed on tablets, i-pads or any mobile medical device will cause an antenna to sound an alarm and lights built into the antenna to flash when the tag is carried too close to the antenna. Thieves with stolen merchandise frequently drop the stolen item(s) when an EAS alarm sounds. Even if they don’t drop the item or attempt to run, staff can answer the alarm and get back items that would have been stolen otherwise.
Earlier I alluded to another program that hospitals are using i-pads to connect parents who have to work and cannot see their baby in Pediatric Intensive Care. “In MGH’s (Massachusetts General Hospital) Pediatric Intensive Care Unit there are mobile computer stations that parents can connect to via an i-pad provided by the hospital. If a parent must work or is unable to be at the hospital at the time rounds are being conducted, a physician can connect with them using the tools…” This article is posted in fiercehealthcare.com by Katie Dvorak, Nov 5, 2015.
Why is this an important topic to me? My wife and I have twins who are now healthy, young adults, but when they were born they were premature and were in pediatric Intensive Care. My wife was allowed to briefly be taken down to their room to view them through the window. Neither of us could hold the children for the first week or two. Had the technology been available to us at that time, it would have helped to ease our concerns by being able to view our children through the camera on an i-pad. Even once we could hold them it was only briefly then they were back in their incubators. Bills still had to be paid and I had to work so I spent hours at work worrying about the babies when it would have eased my mind to have had the ability to view them every so often. When my wife was released from the hospital our twins stayed in for nearly five additional weeks and so one of us was regularly at the hospital visiting the babies. Mobile medical technology in a tablet or i-pad would have made our days somewhat easier.
It is from this perspective that I say Great Job to those hospitals that are using technology to make life easier on families separated from their babies for assorted reasons. I would ask that these hospitals take care to prevent i-pad theft by using Alpha Thunder Tags and Checkpoint Classic N10 antennas to prevent scoundrels from getting away with hospital i-pads and ruining what could be a perfect family connection.
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