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Staying on course with Windows 8

Navigating the choppy seas of health care is not for the faint of heart. A patient’s care can only stay on course if the captain and crew have reliable instruments.

Electronic health records (EHRs) are at the helm of healthcare delivery. EHRs pull together data to help doctors see trends sooner. To help patients avoid the rocks ahead.

One of the instruments that is growing in popularity today is Microsoft Windows 8. It’s hard to buy a new (non-Apple) laptop without it. This operating system offers some distinct benefits for healthcare enterprises.

Smoother sailing with easy-to-deploy technology

Windows 8 enables enterprises to use the same management tools they have in place today. Why does that matter? Think about a simple update to software. There’s the client side, and then there’s the server side. Both sides have to be in sync for the update to work properly.

When each part of the application comes from a different source, it can create a problem. If a user goes to an App Store to download the client side, then enterprises have to be prepared for users that make that trip too soon. They also have to be prepared for those users that don’t go at all.

What happens when the web server is on version 3 and the client devices are on version 2 or 4?

Windows 8 has solved this issue by enabling your Information Technology (IT) department to use the same tools they use today. They have the ability to push out new versions of the client applications while they are updating the server components of those applications.

And yes, there are tools that let IT departments manage this issue for Apple and Android – but they are new tools to purchase and learn.

Canoe or cruise ship? Flexibility is key

You wouldn’t paddle a canoe across an ocean or attempt to sail a cruise ship down a small river. One boat does not fit all waterways, and the same is true for technology. People are moving away from the “Swiss Army Knife” mindset. Meaning, we don’t expect that one device will do it all.

We prefer different devices depending on the task at hand. For example, I prefer my laptop over my tablet if I have a lot of typing to do. But I’ll grab my tablet when I have to sort through and delete emails. Personally, I like devices that do what they do very, very well.

Windows 8 supports this personal choice. It enables new approaches, such as the tablet that clicks into a keyboard when you need it.  It makes it easy to add on functionality with sleeves that hold card readers, RFID readers, barcode readers. You can tailor your device to your needs.

Staying on course with the right tools

The reality of the market (and large enterprises) is that users will continue to have iPads, laptops and Windows 8 devices. We’ll never have 100% or 0% in any of those categories.

Windows 8 is one of many tools that help steer care plans in the right direction. When a ship is off course – even by a single degree – we need to know soon enough to correct it. Or else we might end up in Cuba when we wanted to go to Bermuda. For a patient, early detection could mean the difference between a few simple lifestyle changes and frequent trips to the emergency room.

Does Windows 8 help you better navigate the choppy seas of health care? If so, how?

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