Although mobile medical computer carts have been used in healthcare facilities for more than 25 years, there have been significant advances in battery systems and related technologies in that time. The result is highly versatile carts called workstations on wheels (WOWs). To gain the most from these systems, learn how to implement them in your hospital or practice.
Before introducing energy-efficient hot swappable battery systems, it was necessary for a nurse or doctor to locate a power outlet to recharge the battery. If no outlet was available nearby, the healthcare professional would need to transport the cart to a location potentially far away from the patient.
A hot swappable battery system allows the doctor or nurse to keep the medical cart and its electronics fully charged and functional at all times. As one battery charges, the other supplies the cart with power. This provides continuous, uninterrupted service for those situations where time is critical.
NiCad batteries, which used to be the norm, are gradually being phased out because of the increased cost and weight relative to modern Li-ion (lithium-ion) batteries.
However, at Scott-Clark Medical, we’ve taken battery technology a step further by using lithium iron phosphate (LiFePO4). Our battery packs contain 72 cells and can hold up to 320 watt-hours of energy, providing continuous power when you need it most.
Ways to Implement Medical Computer Carts
A mobile workstation, or computer on wheels, has several applications in a hospital setting. A mobile cart is designed to increase hospital staff productivity by providing a maneuverable system complete with its own power supply. As a result, doctors and nurses can spend more time treating patients and less time shuffling paperwork or finding medical equipment.
Whether you need a laptop cart alone or a more elaborate configuration, these carts are ergonomic to use and include height-adjustable columns to reduce the risk of neck or eye strain.
Efficient data entry
One of the most important ways to use a medical computer cart with a battery pack is efficient data entry. While examining the patient, you can access their electronic medical records instantly using the hospital’s database or cloud system.
You spend less time entering patient information into the health records system, and you can have the patient verify the accuracy of the information you’re entering by showing them the computer display.
This allows you to reduce the potential for data entry errors and incorrect information in the patient’s electronic health records, which is commonplace in the healthcare industry. These errors can cost money and cause adverse patient care outcomes, including death. Because you can order tests electronically, you can also simplify your duties as a healthcare provider and increase patient confidence and engagement.
There is also no need to write information down on paper forms, digitize this information, then catalog or destroy the paper copies, reducing waste.
In addition to data entry, medical computer carts can increase the security of confidential patient medical records and other information. As fewer paper files and forms are used, the likelihood of these files being stolen or seen by unauthorized personnel is reduced.
To view a patient’s medical records, a healthcare professional must have the authorization to access the system, and every attempt to access the computer is logged and tracked.
Computerized medication cart
You can combine a medical computer cart with lockable drawers and RFID scanners to create a multi-purpose system. The healthcare professional can use the scanner to verify the patient’s ID, access information regarding prescriptions and dosages, and dispense medication to the patient — all using the same cart on wheels.
Security systems, such as magnetic card readers, mechanical locks, or electronic keypads should always be used with drawers containing addictive or potentially harmful medications. You can also explore biometric options, such as fingerprint scanners, restricting carts to specific personnel.
Mobile power supply
One of the unique advantages of a rechargeable power system with hot swap capability is that you can use it to power various electronic devices and peripherals in your hospital. These include wristband printers and RFID scanners, which allow you to ID patients, log access attempts, and track vital-sign monitors.
Additionally, if you need to use the onboard battery to charge laptops or medical tablets, separate from the cart, you can. There’s no need to find a power outlet or battery bank.
Find the Best Medical Computer Carts
At Scott-Clark Medical, we specialize in medical computer carts and sophisticated rechargeable battery systems that provide continuous power to onboard electronic equipment. If you’d like to learn more about our medical computer cart modules, custom cart configurations, and patented battery technology, give us a call at (512) 756-7300. We can help you find the best type of cart for your healthcare facility.