When the original iPhone was announced back in 2007 I was contacted by a member of the medical industry who believed that the phone, with it’s large touchscreen, Wi-Fi connectivity and simplicity, would be the future for a paperless medical system. He believed that hospital staff would no longer require paper and patients’ notes would never be lost, as all data would be entered on the phones and synced to a server. I agreed with him and, once the AppStore went live, we saw quite a few interesting and clever medical uses for the iPhone and iPod Touch; from reminding patients when to take medication, to keeping track of personal fitness and, most recently, the case where a victim of the Haiti earthquake used an application to assess his wounds and treat himself before rescuers arrived.
While these applications proved useful, no one introduced the iPhone to hospital wards as a replacement for paper. But the iPad, with it’s much larger 9.7” screen has the chance to change this.