If you haven’t already, it’s time to move to the new Windows

20 March 2014 | Laura Ipsen, Corporate Vice President, Worldwide Public Sector, Microsoft

Remember when your doctor would enter the exam room with your health history on paper charts?  It’s quite a different world than when we released Windows XP in 2001. Back then, pretty much everyone in healthcare was using a centralized desktop PC for patient records. Using a mobile device for a patient interview was something straight out of science fiction! 

Yet that is exactly what’s happening today. Visiting customers and partners around the world today, it’s exciting to see how advances in technology are transforming healthcare delivery. Pediatric Associates and Palmetto Health are two great examples of health organizations that are taking advantage of today’s mobility capabilities so their health professionals can work more efficiently and, more importantly, provide better patient care.

Several clinicians at Palmetto Health are doing all their work using Microsoft Surface Pro. “We’re getting better documentation of quality data and it’s not taking all the time away from actually caring for the patient,” says Tripp Jennings, VP Medical Informatics Officer at Palmetto Health. In fact, Dr. Nick Patel, MD, who also works at Palmetto Health says on average they can see at least two more patients per day.

Today, health professionals like those at Pediatric Associates and Palmetto Health can use mobile devices to access and update the information they need where and when they need it. But this is only possible with the underpinning of a modern infrastructure that helps secure and manage myriad devices and helps maintain compliance with ever-more stringent data privacy regulations.

So if you haven’t already, it’s time to migrate from XP to the new Windows—whether Windows 7 or Windows 8.1—not just because support of XP ends after April 8th, but because the new Windows can help you modernize your infrastructure to keep up with the opportunities and requirements in healthcare today. Even the research firm IDC confirms that Windows is vital to an efficient and cost-effective health organization

Some of you may still be concerned that the legacy applications you’re running in your hospital or clinic won’t work on the new Windows. But I’d encourage you to test that assumption. We’ve built a number of compatibility features into Windows 7 and Windows 8 that simulate XP. We also have a whole set of solutions around application and desktop virtualization so that you can run an old application on a backend system and then stream it to a modern device.

We have listened to your feedback and prioritized giving you many options to enable you to keep using your existing applications, while at the same time, taking advantage of all the great new mobile and touch-based, Windows applications. 

Regardless of where you may be in your transition, we want to make the process as smooth as possible. Even though we’ve been publicizing the end of support for XP for many years as per our Microsoft Support Lifecycle policy, we realize some of you still have a ways to go to complete your migration to the new Windows. So we’ve provided loads of resources on our Windows XP end-of-support webpage, and along with our partners, we are ready to help.

The sooner you move to the new Windows, the sooner you can reap the benefits of a modernized workplace and take part in the exciting innovations in healthcare today. 

Because now it’s not science fiction for a doctor to come into a patient exam room with a mobile device—it’s an expectation. “I have doctors tell me that when they walk into the room with their Windows 8 mobile device, the cool factor goes up,” says Brock Morris, Chief Information Officer, at Pediatric Associates. “But more than that, there’s an expectation now from our patients and their families that we’ll use technology as a tool in our practice. To them, it’s a gauge of quality—it’s a sign that they’re going to receive a high quality of care.”

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Laura Ipsen
Corporate Vice President, Worldwide Public Sector, Microsoft

Microsoft in Health Blog

About the Author

Laura Ipsen | Corporate Vice President, Worldwide Public Sector, Microsoft

In her current role, Laura leads a team of more than 1,900 professionals to deliver services to government, education, and healthcare customers in more than 100 countries. She previously worked at Cisco as head of the Connected Energy Networks unit. Read more