There has been a close relationship between the medical and technological fields for many years. Healthcare facilities seek the best staff and technology to help them deliver high standards of patient care.

With the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic affecting many countries around the world, the importance of having highly-trained medical professionals is abundantly clear. However, these staff also need the necessary equipment to allow them to treat their patients.

In recent years, there has been considerable interest from the medical world in adjustable laptop carts, and the benefit they may bring to the ward. Their versatility and range of features have made them an invaluable tool for many healthcare professionals. With the wealth of options available, it’s useful to know what advantages they can bring.

Help With Infection Control

Infection control is always a top priority in any clinical environment, and in the current climate, it has assumed even greater importance than in normal circumstances. It is essential in a hospital to reduce the chances of an infection passing from one person to another.

When considering a healthcare environment, a large group of medical professionals may gather in communal areas, such as a central point for computers, or an equipment store.

If many people are in close contact or handling the same items such as a computer mouse or keyboard, or the same box where there are masks and gowns, then this could potentially increase the risk of infection transference.

However, a physician or nurse who uses a mobile laptop cart while on their rounds can eliminate the need to return to these central areas. The unit holds a computer that can link into the central database, providing the medic with all the patient information they require.

The professional can load medical equipment such as gloves and sharps into the baskets or securely locked containers on the unit before commencing their rounds. Rather than mixing with a host of other people in a communal area, they can work on their own, knowing they have all they need to deliver care to their patients.

The nature of a medical professional’s job will see them regularly come into contact with patients and visitors. Each rolling laptop cart should have its infection control protocols for the medic to follow. The physician or nurse should ensure they have adequate cleaning and hygiene materials on the cart before they set off on their shift.

Before seeing each patient, they can clean and disinfect their cart and follow the best hygiene practices for themselves and their clothing. After each visit, they can dispose of contaminated materials such as gloves, gowns, masks, and sharps in antimicrobial containers, which they can seal to prevent unauthorized access.

At the end of their shift, or when the bin becomes full, the medic can dispose of the materials in a central biohazard bin.

Additional Storage Space

One of the most useful features of an adjustable mobile laptop cart is its versatility. Aside from containers for waste material, a user can also equip their cart with baskets for carrying materials such as gloves and cleaning fluids, drawers for essentials such as bandages, and even biometric locking systems for securing sensitive equipment such as sharps and pharmaceuticals.

This additional storage space allows the user the ability to take everything they need for their patients without having to return to a central location to get new materials after visiting each patient. Aside from helping with infection control, this is an extremely efficient way of working.

Hospitals can be hectic environments; any incremental increase in efficiency will improve workflow and ultimately lead to a better experience for both staff and patients.

Security for Pharmaceuticals

While it is safe to transport some equipment such as gloves and gowns in baskets or unlocked drawers, there are other types of medical equipment that only authorized personnel should access.

During a day, physicians and nurses will use sharps to draw blood or give injections, put contaminated materials such as bloodied bandages in storage containers, and prescribe medicines to patients. They need to ensure all of these items are secure at all times, and that the public or unauthorized staff are unable to access these locations.

Healthcare facilities can purchase drawers that operate with a lock and key system. However, employees may lose keys, and people who should not have admittance to the drawers could find the key and potentially endanger themselves by opening the drawers.

A much safer method is to have drawers that use biometric locking systems. Only professionals carrying keys encrypted with the proper approvals will have access. For an additional layer of security, the drawers identify the authorized personnel are nearby using proximity scanners, only allowing access when the card is within a predefined distance from the cart.

Should a medic wish to prescribe a medicine to a patient, they must use their card to open the relevant drawer and remove the medication. During this process, they use a barcode scanner to record the medication they are lifting, and this will also create a record of which medic removed the drug, which patients they gave it to, and when the transaction occurred.

This method is an excellent safeguard for both staff and patients. Should a different medic wish to prescribe a medicine to the patient, they will instantly be able to see what the patient already has in their possession, which helps to avoid giving a repeat prescription.

For the physician, should there be any doubt as to whether they have performed their duties correctly, the electronic record provides a clear and transparent account of their actions.

While this is undoubtedly beneficial daily, it will also be invaluable. Management and staff cannot alter the records after they are created.

Improve Patient Engagement

Even if medical professionals are highly trained and given excellent equipment with which to work, numerous studies show that a predictor of improved patient outcomes is patient engagement, and in particular, the patient experiencing a good relationship with their physician.

An adjustable laptop stand is ideal for helping a physician to connect with their patient on a professional, but also relatable basis. Sometimes medical professionals may speak to their patients using complicated terms that are difficult to understand.

If they are also standing over their patient, looking down at them in their bed, this can seem like it is impersonal and that the medic is instructing rather than including a patient in their treatment plan.

Mobile computer desks come with a height adjustment feature, which allows the medic to lower the laptop computer to the height of their patient’s bed. Even in a small workspace such as the area around bedsides, the laptop desk will give the patient a good view of the screen, which can come in various inch wide sizes.

When discussing the patient results or treatment plans, the physician can show them exactly what data and images they are working with, and why they believe a particular treatment plan is their best option.

Patients can point out the information they are struggling to understand, and the medic can use the internet-enabled computer to bring up helpful articles and pictures which can aid understanding.

By engaging with the patient, and making them feel part of their treatment, physicians can bond in a professional capacity with those who are relying on their judgment.

The Takeaway

Much of an adjustable laptop cart’s value lies in its versatility, and medics can adapt their carts to suit almost any hospital scenario. Healthcare facilities can add extra storage, extra screens, increase weight capacity, side tables, specialist equipment for various wards, and many more options.

Each ward in a clinical setting will have their own unique needs, and this is where a mobile cart can excel and help you both improve efficiency and patient outcomes.

For a personalized quote, contact Scott-Clark Medical. With years of experience working with medical professionals, we can give you expert, impartial advice. Our adjustable carts come with a 5-year guarantee and free shipping.

Steve is a former healthcare professional who writes about technological advancements in the industry, with a special interest in the geriatric demographic.
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