South Australian Health Department lifts iPad ban

South Australian Department of Health finally lifts its ban on Apple tablet that started in May over concerns of putting patient data at risk.

The South Australian Department of Health has lifted its nearly half-year ban on the Apple iPad after a review of the device by its technology staff.

In late May, SA Health chief executive officer Tony Sherbon issued a letter to all department staff warning against corporate purchases of the devices until they could be properly assessed.

Sherbon was concerned that the devices may place patient information at risk, and tasked the technology department with testing the iPad security controls.

Divisions could apply for an exemption to acquire an Apple iPad if a legitimate business driver existed.

The ban was lifted on Oct. 4, some three months later than initially planned.

"Both clinical and business use of iPads is subject to an approval process within SA Health so as to ensure security and inter-operability issues are carefully considered," the department said in a statement to ZDNet Asia's sister site, ZDNet Australia.

"SA Health has a responsibility to ensure that computer assets under its control are adequately secured and are used in a consistent and appropriate manner."

Victorian Premier John Brumby has pledged over A$300,000 (US$227,640) to purchase upwards of 500 iPads for schools, and about A$500,000 (US$484,350) to supply the same number of devices to graduate doctors, nursing practitioners and advanced practice nurses to use while treating patients.

This article was first published at ZDNet Australia.