Why Healthcare Facilities Are Accelerating Upgrades from PC to Tablet Workstations during COVID-19

Tablet Workstations are Replacing Wheeled PCs

Old technologies just don’t deliver the same experiences they once did. The computer on wheels (COWs), workstation on wheels (WOWs), wheeled PCs or better known as the PC workstations are being upgraded for tablet workstations.

“The laptop is dead, the desktop is gone,” says John Halamka, Chief Information Officer at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center in Boston, and continues, “Having the desktop [computer] or even the laptop between you and the patient is a negative experience.”

Did these older technologies really lose their competitive edge against tablets? The answer is a resounding yes.

Tablets offer convenience, support efficient workflows, and create better patient experiences. Healthcare providers are finding these benefits important today especially during this global pandemic.

Let’s get a good understanding of the medical communities’ acceptance for tablet workstation and explore these benefits in more detail.

Easier Mobility

Patients are spread across different locations within facilities and they don’t want to wait. Therefore, providers want technologies that are easier to travel with.

Andrew Kwang, a Registered Nurse at Cleveland Clinic reported his experience using PC workstations in a Cleveland Clinic news article, claiming “WOWs to be cumbersome to pull around and push into rooms.”

There is a fraction of the weight to push around when you replace PC workstations. Tablets average less than 4 pounds while the much larger wheeled PC can weigh up to 100 pounds.

More Available Space

The space within healthcare facilities has always been crowded with medical devices and equipment. While these tools are a critical part of patient care, they can get in the way and ruin the patient experience.

One of the largest national medical organizations, the American Academy of Family Physicians, agrees the main disadvantage of standard desktops is that they require more space than Tablets.

The in-room experience becomes less crowded with tablets due to their smaller size. The tablet is just as powerful as a PC and it doesn’t require extra components like wires or keyboards.

Extended Battery Life & Faster Boot-Up Time

Every second counts when providers are helping patients. Providers need solutions that are can be available immediately and long lasting when at the aid of a patient.

Although a tablet’s design is smaller in size, the minimal components make way for extended battery usage. Also, tablets generally boot-up faster than standard PCs.

More Modern Technology

Health providers need the latest technology to do important tasks like sharing health records or images with colleagues and patients.

“For me, the most important use in the operating room is for reviewing imaging studies,” says Dr. Felasfa M. Wodajo, MD, an Assistant Professor for Orthopedic Surgery at Virginia Commonwealth University School of Medicine and Georgetown University Hospital.

For Dr. Felasfa, tablets are more efficient when studying images because it requires no additional components. Tablets are capable of processing images on their own. On the other hand, CD-ROMs might be required when studying images on PC workstations.

Improved Mobility

With the correct tablet enclosure or case, the tablet workstation becomes more flexible than PCs on wheels. Yes, the tablet itself isn’t flexible, but when combined with tablet enclosures like Enterprise Tablet Pro™, a tablet turns into a versatile and secure workstation.

With the Enterprise Tablet Pro™ , tablets easily rotate at up to 180 degrees or tilted at up to a 90 degree angle.

This gives medical providers the capacity to easily share health records, prescription information, test results, or other helpful resources with the patient. No need to wrestle with a monitor just to get the same results with a wheeled PC.

Easier Transition

Why is it so easy for us to adapt to tablets? Simple. We are familiar with the technology. Both our smartphones and tablets share multi-touch user interfaces.

Don’t think smartphones have taken over? The number of smartphone users worldwide currently surpasses three billion and is expected to grow even more.

The transitions to a tablet won’t be difficult for providers or patients because we are already used to dragging, swiping, and tapping on our personal devices.


The PC workstation is on the decline. As tablets continue to gain more acceptance in the medical community, one can say that its purpose will no longer be needed.

Businesswire predicts the global mobile health market to compound over 25% from 2018 to 2023 as healthcare facilities continue to incorporate technologies like tablets.

Has the current COVID-19 pandemic changed the course of this prediction? Some might argue the demand has never been greater. Why? Tablets prevent the spread of germs through virtual communication as M Health Fairview, a non-profit University Medical Center in Minnesota, points out in their blog.

In all, Tablet workstations are the modern technologies widely accepted in the medical setting. These solutions are improving the patient experience, the workflow, & providing convenience for medical staff members.

Ready to make the switch?

MTI’s Tablet Workstation Solutions

If you need tablet workstations, our solutions provide the flexibility health facilities need to configure and deploy tablet solutions quickly and efficiently. This includes a collection of different cart sizes to help provide the appropriate system support needed for the various treatment areas and patient rooms while minimizing the space carts require.

Our cart solutions are lighter and easier to move than traditional carts and take less space. these solutions can also be easily disinfected using medical grade products found in the healthcare environment.

Our Enterprise Tablet Pro, Enterprise Lite, and Pipeline products are available to Healthcare OEMs. VARs and integrators with off-the-shelf solutions specifically tailored for healthcare using either tablets from Apple, Microsoft, and Zebra tablets.

Please contact us at [email protected] with questions or to request a brochure.

About MTI

MTI is a leader in global retail security, with innovative smart retail store software solutions and a global field service provider trusted by many of the world’s most successful consumer electronics retailers and brands. MTI helps clients protect high value products with innovative security solutions augmented by a open IoT platform that enables retailers to close the access control and visibility gaps between management, front line teams, in-store technology and the customer experience. In addition, MTI’s unique global service and contact center reaches over 90 countries globally providing installation, repair and training and brand advocacy solutions to retailers and brands.

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