Rugged tablets are single-panel touchscreen computers that are smaller than a laptop but larger than a phone. While many are familiar with consumer grade tablets, first responders work in demanding environments that require more durable rugged tablets to help save lives in the field.
Tablets are increasingly being adopted by emergency services to enhance patient care in the field, and the benefits aren’t just for dedicated medical personnel. Law enforcement, fire, and other emergency staff can utilize medical rugged tablets to quickly obtain vital information and transmit it to a medical facility before arriving with the patient.
Tablets offer cellular data capabilities that laptops generally don’t have, and can be vital when time is of the essence and communication and data transfer could mean saving a life. In contrast to regular rugged tablets, medical tablets have a few added options that make caring for injured civilians or co-workers in the field more effective.
Emergency professionals and first responders can utilize medical rugged tablets to fill out and send documents, check symptoms and medication interactions, seek help for dealing with disabled individuals, and more. Note taking and transmission can be done via keyboard, a touch screen, or even by hand with a stylus for speed and efficiency, and notes shared in real time with medical professionals at the nearest hospital.
Advice can be given to stabilize a patient and prepare them for transport, even if the first responder isn’t a specialist. Any information required can be transmitted immediately, and guidance provided to ensure the best possible outcome. Tablets allow emergency responders to deal with situations they haven’t been trained for, or those they have trained for but have never encountered.
At the same time, key persons can be contacted, such as guardians or next of kin to alert them a loved one is on route and the destination. Information on an unconscious or unresponsive patient can be gleaned from a number of public sources, from public records and other sources, to ensure the most detailed picture as possible is created. This leads to better patient care and can head off mistakes by providing information about medical conditions or medications not immediately available.
Software options such as video-conferencing applications, file sharing services, and more can be instantly employed to provide support to emergency services and first responders. The wealth of information available can help save lives in critical situations.
Access to databases such as the Wireless Information System for Emergency Responders (WISER) can allow first responders to identify unknown substances via searching by smell, color, and human exposure symptoms. This is just one example of how medical tablets can allow first responders to save lives and prevent further injury or infection with powerful purpose-built tablets.