Coast physicians turn to iPhones

by Wally Northway

Published: February 9,2010

Tags: healthcare, telecommunications

PASCAGOULA — Singing River Health System (SRHS) cardiologists are pioneering the integration of mobile technology and healthcare on the Mississippi Coast by using Apple iPhones to access patients’ test results without delay, regardless of the physician’s location.

“In medicine, especially in cardiology, you have to act quickly,” said cardiologist Dr. Hugo Quintana. “If someone is coming in with a heart attack, you don’t have hours to reach a diagnosis, you have minutes.”

When a patient enters the SRHS Emergency Department with cardiovascular symptoms, an electrocardiogram (EKG) is taken within the first five minutes to graph the heart’s electrical activity. Within two minutes, the EKG technologist will have loaded the test results onto a secure web site. The cardiologist is able to log into the system from anywhere where there is Internet access, including mobile connections via an iPhone.

The use of mobile technology and devices such as the iPhone in medicine is not limited to cardiology. Obstetricians and gynecologists can purchase an application to view wave forms, radiologists may read x-ray images or magnetic resonance images (MRIs) and the iPhone can even be used bedside to help patients identify which medications they take.

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