Customer Solution Case Study
Healthcare Provider Boosts Patient Data
Collection and Use with Mobile Devices
“Our use of Windows Mobile powered devices is a
Customer: Tara Cares
Web Site: www.taracares.com
success. We are able to collect and analyze resident
Country or Region: United States data more efficiently than we could with paper forms.
We get more and better data.”
Todd Fogle, Chief Information Officer, Tara Cares
Tara Cares, based in Orchard Park, New
York, supports 34 nursing facilities and
Tara Cares, a support organization for nursing, senior-living, and
senior-living and assisted-living centers assisted-living centers, wanted to replace its manual system of
across seven states.
collecting patient and resident data with a solution that would cut
Software and Services data collection time while increasing the ability to use this
Windows Mobile® 5.0
Windows Mobile 2003
information. The company addressed its needs by using Windows
Microsoft® SQL Server™ 2000 Mobile® powered Pocket PCs and by managing them with SOTI
MobiControl device management software.
Hewlett-Packard iPAQ Pocket PCs
Business Needs enable healthcare providers to devote more
The 34 nursing facilities and senior-living of their day to delivering care and less to
and assisted-living centers supported by keeping track of care.
Tara Cares are spread across seven
southern and midwestern U.S. states. For a The company developed clear requirements
variety of reasons—some related to the for a solution. It wanted a mobile computing
provision of care and others related to the solution that would enable professional staff
reimbursement for that care—the facilities to input the required data with a few taps on
needed a constant tally of the services they a mobile touch-screen wherever they were in
provide to patients and residents. the facilities, which would free staffers from
having to return to their desktops to enter
That tally was conducted mainly through the information.
For more information about other Microsoft use of paper forms. The process was
customer successes, please visit: laborious and expensive. Tara Cares It also wanted the solution to send
www.microsoft.com/casestudies executives wanted a solution that would information wirelessly to a central database,
thereby eliminating the need for costly, time- monitoring, problem correction, and Thanks to the Windows Mobile powered
consuming, and error-prone rekeying of data. configuration; device security; and reporting. devices, the typical facility collects, analyzes,
and reports on nearly 10,000 pieces of
Tara Cares wanted to ensure that its mobile When users request support for their mobile information per day.
computing solution would be easy and cost- devices and Healthcare applications, support
effective to deploy and manage, meaning that staff can see and control the devices Tara Cares was also able to deploy the
support staff could remotely monitor and remotely using a centralized console that Windows Mobile powered devices cost-
troubleshoot problems with the devices and shows them the screens of the devices as effectively. For instance, at several facilities,
applications. In addition, Tara Cares wanted well as detailed data about the devices and the networks developed “dead” zones or
to restrict employee access to its Healthcare their status. The support staff can use this were affected by interference from residents’
applications alone, and to automate the remote information and walk users through wireless phones. Instead of Tara Cares
process of re-imaging devices remotely in the questions about using the device and having to send IT staff to troubleshoot the
event of a hard reset or battery power loss. applications, providing remote, just-in-time problem, nontechnical administrators carried
training. the mobile devices through problem areas.
The company also needed to ensure the Technicians monitored and took remote
security of the data being processed by the Because sensitive data is transmitted from control of the mobile devices, obtaining all
solution—a particular concern, given the device to the network in real time, no the information they needed to solve the
regulatory requirements such as the Health important data is ever stored on the device, problems.
Insurance Portability and Accountability Act eliminating the risk that sensitive patient
(HIPAA) and given the potential security data could be compromised if a device is ”By including MobiControl in our solution, we
concerns associated with mobile devices, stolen. To safeguard data during gained an enhanced level of remote
which can be lost or stolen and which transmission over the wireless network, Tara management and control that makes it
transmit their data wirelessly. Cares uses Wi-Fi Protected Access and highly cost effective to deploy the mobile
encryption. devices without having IT personnel at each
Solution location,” says Fogle.
To address these requirements, Tara Cares Tara Cares uses MobiControl’s lockdown
adopted a mobile computing solution with features to limit the Pocket PC features to Fogle also finds increasing benefits from the
Windows Mobile® powered Hewlett-Packard which users have access. This solution takes feature-restricting capabilities of the
iPAQ Pocket PCs, and it manages these advantage of Windows Mobile persistent file solution. When employees pick up the
devices using MobiControl software from storage, which automatically restores the device, they’re using it only for the purpose
Microsoft® Gold Certified Partner SOTI. The device to a fully functional and secured state that Tara Cares intends.
company has deployed 550 Windows Mobile after a reset.
5.0 and Windows Mobile 2003 powered Tara Cares configured the mobile devices to
devices to its professional staff. These Benefits always restore to the approved application
staffers enter patient and resident data into “Our use of Windows Mobile powered screen, so they can’t be used as general-
their devices, which upload the information in devices is a success,” says Todd Fogle, Chief purpose mobile devices. That limits their
real time over wireless networks to a server Information Officer, Tara Cares. “We are able value to potential thieves, virtually
running Microsoft SQL Server™ 2000 to collect and analyze resident data more eliminating the problem that the devices will
database software. efficiently than we could with paper forms. become too mobile and “walk out the door.”
We get more and better data, and our
The MobiControl mobile device management professional staff is freed to spend more of
solution provides a centralized management its time with patients and residents. It’s a
console; automated provisioning of data and win-win situation.”
software; tools for remote-control, help-desk
support and troubleshooting; automatic
This case study is for informational purposes only. MICROSOFT MAKES NO WARRANTIES, EXPRESS OR IMPLIED, IN THIS SUMMARY.
Document published June 2007