Panasonic has published a white paper on the “consumerization” of healthcare IT, specifically through media tablet devices like the iPad.

The white paper, “Diagnosis Danger: Governance & Security Issues Cause IT Concerns About iPad in Healthcare Setting,” highlights the growing concerns of healthcare IT executives trying to meet the demands to support consumer-grade computing devices. The study, conducted by BizTechReports, an independent research and reporting agency, found major operational issues for media tablets in healthcare, with 66% of respondents stating consumer tablets, like the iPad, create governance challenges for their organizations. Other concerns include security, durability and EHR compliance.

The results of the survey reveal that consumerization in general has created a conundrum for healthcare CIOs and their IT departments. Pressure to adopt and integrate technologies, like consumer tablets, is growing, but concerns are also on the rise. The study showed that 74% of respondents said consumer-grade tablets present challenges for entering data into enterprise-grade healthcare applications. Another 66% of participants believe providing technical support on consumer-grade tablets raises IT costs.

Research featured in the white paper is based on responses from 100 executives and senior IT professionals in the healthcare sector. The report provides an assessment of various issues raised by the introduction of consumer-grade technologies, specifically the iPad, and provides a framework for how IT executives can engage with healthcare practitioners as well as management to address these issues in a productive manner.

“Consumer-grade technology, like the iPad and many of the other tablets we see entering the market today, were not designed to operate or survive in commercial environments like healthcare,” says Panasonic’s Greg Davidson, executive business development manager. “We agree the form factor has great potential, but wanted to better understand the concerns of IT professionals in the healthcare market. The study we commissioned allows us to better understand our customer’s needs and is a useful tool for any healthcare organization interested in deploying tablet technology.”

Reliability and durability proved to be a major point of concern for HIT decision makers. Ninety-four percent of participants feel that device durability and “ruggedness” are important requirements in hospital and clinical settings. In a healthcare environment, the likelihood of a mobile device falling, being dropped or spilled upon, is high. Consumer grade technologies are not designed to operate or to survive for long in such a rugged setting.

For a full copy of the Panasonic-sponsored BizTechReports white paper go .