The stunning commercial success of tablets and other mobile solutions often masks the newness of these technologies, most of which have become popular only in the last two years. Nowhere is this more the case than in the world of healthcare. Here information usually starts its journey as a piece of paper, a form, or some other document.
Despite the common wisdom that a smartphone or tablet is the best choice when considering a mobile solution, there remains an enormous range of healthcare documents and papers that still need to be filled out or marked up by hand.
Healthcare applications across the globe are turning to the solution to provide instantaneous access to information. As the original mobile device, the pen has been transformed from a device that puts ink onto paper into a rugged, versatile and exceptionally easy-to-use data input device – a smart pen – that lends itself to a variety of unique and highly valuable use cases. There are a number of interesting examples spanning the healthcare industry where digital pen technology is being used.
Technology Being Utilized Around the Globe to Instantly Digitize Information
WESTBOROUGH, Mass. — November 13, 2012 — Anoto Group, the creator of Digital Pen and Paper technology, today announced that its flexible and easy-to-use mobile solutions are being adopted by a wide range of healthcare organizations throughout the globe to provide instant access to information.
Anoto operates through a network of specialized partners that work with healthcare organizations that, due to varied circumstances, continue to rely on paper to capture information. Since data collected by the pen becomes instantly available, the solution provides a way for physicians to better collaborate and consult with other healthcare professionals, when and where they need to, translating into better healthcare for all. There is also no physical barrier to the communication between the doctor and the patient that can result with other, more bulky, kinds of technologies such as tablets and laptops.
In addition, the costs associated with training and workflow interruption are dramatically reduced when using a data capture method that is as familiar and intuitive as a pen. For instance, in the UK market, the National Health Service needs to reach a return on investment (ROI) within 18 months on any new technology deployment. Therefore, digital pen technology has been embraced as an ideal solution since it is quick to implement and quick to deliver tangible benefits.
“We continue to find that paper use in healthcare is prevalent universally, particularly for those in remote locations or under pressure to provide accelerated ROI,” said Stein Revelsby, CEO of Anoto. “With Anoto digital pen technology, physicians can digitize information simply by just changing the pen they are using. Better collaboration with patients and healthcare professionals occurs as a result of the information becoming immediately available.”
A recent survey conducted by Anoto looking at paper use in healthcare, found that more than half of respondents still use paper as a primary source for tracking information within their organizations’ daily activities, citing reasons such as:
- Paper is too embedded in the culture;
- Technology adoption is too expensive; and
- Switching to an electronic system requires too much training and would disrupt care delivery.
In addition, 63% of respondents spend anywhere from 25% to more than 75% of their time at work drafting or processing paperwork.
Digital pen technology’s mobility, ease of use and instantaneous data access has resulted in varied deployments worldwide. Some examples include:
- Digitized Maternity Notes in the UK – Digital pen technologies can be used for digitizing maternity notes, as seen recently by the Perinatal Institute, whose digital maternity notes could potentially save £16 million per annum, whilst freeing up even more time for patient care.
- Meaningful Use in the United States – Digital pen technology is increasingly being utilized by healthcare providers to input structured data into a patient’s electronic health record (EHR) directly from paper. The result is the adoption of Meaningful Use certified EHRs across a range of areas including hospitals, ambulatory care facilities and physician practices.
- Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI) Assessments for Wounded Warriors –TBIs are a serious consequence for soldiers in combat zones. Anoto digital pen technology is used to conduct the TBI test, providing detailed test results, which improves assessments and creates a detailed digital record to which clinicians can get immediate access and use for long-term tracking.
- Telehealth – Anoto digital pens can be used in conjunction with mobile phone technologies for care in community initiatives, such as the Aneurin Bevan Health Board Frailty Program, which has saved the health board £600,000 per year.
- Digital Pain Diary Brings Relief to Palliative Home Care in Sweden – Patients experienced an improvement in the contact with their caregivers and felt that they were participating more in their own care. The technology allowed patients to combine the comfort of being cared for in their own homes with real-time monitoring and control of their pain levels.
- Greater Dedicated Time to Patients in UK – 800 clinicians within the Derbyshire Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust use Anoto’s digital pen technologies, which allow the Foundation Trust to spend more time with patients without increasing staff levels.
- Breast Cancer Screenings in France – Digital pen technology makes it possible to speed up readings and returning interpretations of bi-annual mammograms. The solution helps to eliminate errors by non-medical staff when entering data. It has also resulted in significant cost and time savings. The average time sent per mammogram has been reduced from three hours to 20 minutes.
- Rehabilitation in Switzerland – Physicians fill out pain assessments forms and the information instantly transferred to electronic data base. Data is now available faster, resulting in more time for care and increased security and accuracy of information.
- Jamaica Cleft Pallet Surgery – Digital pens are being used to document the efficacy of preventive dental care in Jamaica in order to drive expanded funding of worldwide programs from global health organizations.
The digital pen looks feels and writes like a normal ballpoint pen. However, it contains an integrated digital camera, an advanced image microprocessor and a mobile communications device for wireless connection. Using a digital pen on a surface covered with Anoto’s patented dot pattern, users can capture, store and then securely send the handwriting, enabling them to instantaneously convert ink to digital data. Every small area of the pattern has a unique combination of dots which indicates the exact position of the digital pen as it moves across the surface. There are so many unique combinations that if every variant of dots was printed out, the stack of paper would reach the moon or cover the continents of Europe and Asia twice over.
About Anoto Group
Anoto Group is the company behind and world leading in the unique technology for digital pen and paper, which enables fast and reliable transmission of handwritten text into a digital format. Anoto operates through a global partner network that focuses on user-friendly solutions for efficient capture, transmission and storage of data within different business segments, e.g. healthcare, bank and finance, transport and logistics and education. The Anoto Group has around 100 employees and is headquartered in Lund (Sweden). The company also has offices in Guildford and Wetherby (UK), Boston (US) and Tokyo (Japan). The Anoto share is traded on the Small Cap list of NASDAQ OMX Stockholm under the ticker ANOT. For more information, please visit: www.anoto.com.