Mobile Computing in Nursing

Publication Date:           June 2004
Number of Pages:          78
Number of figures:         39
Report Price:                 $1,495 U.S. Dollars
enterprise pricing available upon request

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Introduction  (download paper overview)

Mobile Computing in Nursing provides valuable insights into how
nurses are using mobile computing solutions at the bedside and
how these solutions can best be used to solve existing workflow
inefficiencies.  The study uncovers strong opinions regarding the
market opportunities and challenges for deploying mobile nursing
solutions within healthcare organizations today.  

The content for Mobile Computing in Nursing was derived from
100 in-depth interviews with nursing professionals
nationwide.  These nurses represented a broad range of nursing
specialties, institution sizes and varying levels of technical
competence and familiarity.

The telephone interviews were conducted over a 3-month period
starting in March 2004. The purpose of the interviews was to identify
their critical needs and requirements through discussions about
existing workflow inefficiencies, usage of mobile devices and clinical
applications today, and opportunities for mobile computing solutions
in the future.  

Spyglass evaluated key vendor product offerings and identified
early adopter organizations that have successfully deployed next
generation mobile nursing solutions at the bedside.  

Target Audience

  • Software and hardware vendors, systems integrators
    and management consultants who are selling mobile
    computing devices, applications and services into the
    healthcare industry.
  • Hospital administrators and IT executives who are
    making strategic decisions to fund clinical information
    technology solutions including mobile computing.  
  • Clinicians who are involved in informatics and clinical system
    evaluation and selection.
  • Investment banking and private equity investors


Nurses represent the largest healthcare professional group in the
United States with over 2.69 million active members.  They are a
scare resource working in high stress, high risk, and data intensive
environments that are dominated by paper-based processes and
inefficient workflows.  As a result, nurses spend upwards of 50
percent of their time documenting patient care provided.  

Market Trends.  Nurses represent a large market opportunity that
can exploit the potential benefit of information technology.  
According to hospital administrators interviewed, the need for
nursing automation and mobile computing is being driven by a
number of powerful market forces including:
  • Renewed industry focus on patient safety
  • Aging baby boomer population
  • Skyrocketing healthcare costs
  • Acute nursing shortage
  • Healthcare industry’s under-investment in IT

Market Opportunity.  
Mobile computing is poised to revolutionize
the way nurses provide care at the bedside to improve nursing
productivity and efficiency, increase patient safety and reduce risk
of medical errors.  With mobile computing, nurses can:
  • Generate structured clinical documentation
  • Automate safety checks  through bar code technology
  • Access information on-demand
  • Automate vital sign data collection
  • Facilitate real-time communications with  team members
  • Practice evidence-based nursing

Today, mobile computing is gaining momentum at healthcare
organizations around the country.  Healthcare organizations are
implementing mobile computing initiatives primarily with computers-
on-wheels enabling nurses to do clinical documentation and bar
code medication administration at the patient’s bedside.  Large
numbers of nurses are also independently purchasing mobile
devices and standalone reference based tools themselves.

Market Challenges.  While a growing number of organizations are
implementing mobile nursing solutions, a significant number of
challenges exist for widespread deployment.
 These challenges
  • Priority of nursing automation
  • Funding
  • Quality of HCIT vendor products
  • Clinician adoption
Spyglass Consulting Group
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