As a military veteran myself and a concerned citizen who cares deeply for our combat veteran’s, I am very interested in the steps taken by our Veteran’s Administration hospitals to care for our wounded warriors. I believe these soldiers deserve the best possible care for treating both their physical wounds and their mental wounds. So, it was interesting for me find that V.A. hospitals are now using i-pads to help both physicians and V.A. social workers in assisting veterans. According to a July 22, 2014 story by Keith Gottschalk in pittsburgh.va.gov, the VA Pittsburgh Hospital received 600 i-pads that June. Some of the benefits for clinicians that were listed:
• Convenient access to real-time clinical information
• Mobile access to patient information throughout the medical center
• Easy access to medical tools at work, home and on the go
• Secure communication between patients and providers; and
• Improved access to patient-generated data
As the hospitals find the value of using such devices and increase their spending on them, there is a definite risk of i-pad theft or tablet theft. Making sure this does not happen should be a priority and using an Alpha Thunder Tag can decrease the chance of pilferage.
The Alpha Thunder Tag works with an electronic article surveillance antenna system. When an antenna, such as a Checkpoint Classic N10 antenna is set up at a door, if a tagged device is carried into radio frequency range, an alarm in the antenna is set off. The loud, sharp, distinctive noise alerts employees that a tagged item is being carried out. Staff can verify that the person carrying the device has the authority to do so, or they can recover it from someone who is trying to steal it. Concern about possible tampering with the tag is alleviated due to the tamper proof nature of the Alpha Thunder Tag. If someone were to try to remove the tag, the tag alarms and like the Checkpoint Classic N10 antenna, staff can respond to the alarm and prevent a theft from occurring.
Is i-pad theft or tablet theft a concern for V.A. hospitals? It can be, just as it is for any other agency that incorporates the devices into their operations. One example, found on the website va.gov, a reported theft on 7/29/2015, involved an employee who took VA issued hardware from a government vehicle and transferred it to her own car at the end of her shift. She then stopped at a store on the way home and someone broke into her car stealing VA issued equipment including an i-pad, cell phone and car key. In an article posed on May 27, 2014 in Denverpost.com, two VA hospital laptop computers were stolen from a lab. My point is, mobile computing devices are a great addition to VA hospitals but do need to be secured.
I don’t want to lose sight of the benefits of mobile medical devices in VA hospitals. In another article in goerie.com, March 27, 2016, Gerry Weiss reported on a licensed social worker from the Erie Veterans Affairs Medical Center, who is meeting with combat veterans who are not comfortable around crowds or people they don’t know. Some of the veterans she is meeting with are homeless or living out of shelters.The story describes how the social worker uses a hospital i-pad to arrange meetings using Skype to arrange meetings between the veterans and behavioral health specialists. Such stories are encouraging, and demonstrate that even our homeless veterans have an opportunity to get assistance they might otherwise not receive. Computer tablets and i-pads are making these inroads possible.
Adding Checkpoint Classic N10 antennas at hospital entrances and placing an Alpha Thunder Tag on all medical mobile devices, can prevent i-pad theft at V.A. hospitals as well as other medical facilities. Preventing thieves from stealing property that adds so much richness to the treatment of patients must be a priority. Stealing anything that hinders a patient’s care should make us angry. Stealing devices that help our veterans is unconscionable.
Get more information on Alpha Thunder Tags, contact us or call 1.770.426.0547 today.