Expo: MacPractice preps for iPad

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MacPractice can’t wait for the iPad.

The company makes software for medical practices (MacPractice MD for doctors, MacPractice DDS for dentists, MacPractice DC for chiropractors, and MacPractice 20/20 for eye doctors). All of those programs help practitioners in their clinics (seeing patients) as well as their back offices (managing the practice).

The company has been showing off version 3.7 of all four products at Macworld Expo this week. It also talked about its plans for iPad apps. Apple’s forthcoming tablet is a natural fit for the company.

Imagine walking into your doctor’s office for a check-up. Instead of handing you a clipboard with paper forms, the receptionist could hand you an iPad; you'd tap in answers on an electronic form, and those replies would be transmitted wirelessly to the patient database. Instead of writing down diagnoses and procedures on a paper chart, your doctor could record them all on an iPad using MacPractice's software; again, your medical records would be updated automatically.

The company already has iPhone apps to augment its Mac software; those apps allow medical professionals to access schedules and patient records from anywhere via Wi-Fi or 3G. MacPractice President Mark Hollis says that the company’s first iPad apps will be updates of those iPhone programs, adapted for the tablet’s larger screen.

But after the iPad launches, he says the company plans to create native iPad apps. For example, MacPractice Kiosk for iPad will allow patients and office staff to fill out electronic medical records (EMR) forms—doing away with that old clipboard.

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