Typing is a Thing of the Past

How electronic pens are helping to digitalize forms in the public health service

Dr. Wilhelm Peters of the Steinbeis Transfer Center for Site Management and Business Development has joined forces with TAKWA to develop a system that makes it possible to produce online digital documents in real time to replace classic paper forms. At the heart of the process lies the ePen, a kind of electronic writing instrument that can be combined with modern document recognition software, also offering extensive database integration.

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The process, which has now been patented, is based on dot-pattern technology, redeveloped for a wide range of application formats. It has already entered use in the German public health service. Even during the Covid-19 pandemic, Steinbeis Entrepreneur Wilhelm Peters considers use of the special pen highly effective and efficient: “The testing mishap in Bavaria, where the records of tested patients were captured in writing, would likely not have happened with the ePen system, or at least it would have been less severe.”

How the ePen works
For forms to be filled in with an ePen, they need a dot matrix that allows the electronic pen to recognize where it is positioned on the sheet. The pen then stores this location and creates a digital vector image of the form complete with handwritten entries. The new document recognition software is so effective that it can even relatively reliably decipher and digitalize bad handwriting.

Specific applications in hospitals and companies
Used in hospitals and companies, digitalized documents can be encrypted and made available by using smart databases in real time. Just one of the benefits of taking this approach is that it enhances electronic security and makes it easier to collaborate efficiently with others.

Medicine involves a whole host of documentation requirements, especially in clinical settings involving nursing, from extensive patient admission procedures to quality assurance, and the billing of rendered services. And this tends to eat up lots of time! “It’s been proven that the fastest way to capture data is to use our ePen solution; it’s based on a traditional process using paper but at the same time, it produces digitalized documents – without any scanning,” says Wilhelm Peters. The system provides options at every stage of processing for making amendments or intervening, and it even allows users to create PDF files.

Use in a wide range of applications in a clinical setting and nursing shows just how useful the digital pen can be. Users derive particular benefit from the simplicity of the system and the mobile options it offers.


Dr. Wilhelm Peters (author)
Steinbeis Entrepreneur
Steinbeis Transfer Center Site Management and Business Development (Bad Krozingen)