United States Patent [191
[11]
1451
Ramsey, III
Patent Number:
Date of Patent:
4,988,229
Jan. 29, 1991
Primary Examiner-Paul A. Bell
[54] SINGLE HAND NOTEBOOK
[75] Inventor: Maynard Ramsey, HI, Tampa, Fla.
Attorney, Agent, or Firm-Paul A. Coletti; W. Brinton
[73] Assignee: Critikon, Inc., Tampa, Fla.
[57]
[21] Appl. No.: 353,268
[22] Filed:
May 17, 1989
A looseleaf notebook is provided for retaining bar code
listings which denote conditions of a patient in a hospi
tal. The notebok includes a strap which encircles the
[51]
Int. Cl.5 ......... ................................. .. B42F 13/40
[52]
US. Cl. ........................................ .. 402/4; 281/43;
[58]
Field of Search ..................... .. 251/42, 45, 43, 44;
binding of the notebook. Preferably this strap is ?xed in
place between the notebook ring mechanism and the
inside of the binding panel of the notebook. The strap is
also preferably adjustable or resiliently stretchable. The
281/45; 402/80 R
402/4, 80 R
[56]
7/1913
1,397,645 11/1921
McNeill et al.
Farley ............. ..
2,211,879
Cave ....... ..
8/1940
strap permits the notebook to be held open and manipu
the binding panel while supporting the opened covers
of the notebook with the thumb and ?ngers of the hand.
Rotzell ...................... .. 402/4
1,562,320 11/1925
ABSTRACT
lated by a user who slides a hand between the strap and
References Cited
U.S. PATENT DOCUMENTS
1,066,757
Yorks, Jr.
. 281/45
281/43
281/45
4,129,212 12/1978 Hopkins
402/77 X
4,133,050
1/1979
Kuk
...... .
. . . . ..
402/4 X
4,284,220
8/ 1981
Nice
.. ....... .
. . . . . ..
224/242
4,903,932
2/1990
Stewart, Jr. .................... .. 281/45 X
With the notebook being held in one hand in this man
ner, the user’s other hand is free to manipulate a bar
code reader over the patient condition bar codes, or to
perform other information-gathering or medical func
tions.
10 Claims, 3 Drawing Sheets
US. Patent
Jan. 29, 1991
Sheet 3 of 3
F/G-5
4,988,229
1
4,988,229
2
free to manipulate a bar code reader over the patient
condition bar codes, or to perform other information
gathering or medical functions.
SINGLE HAND NOTEBOOK
In the drawings:
This invention relates to notebooks which are to be
FIG. 1 illustrates a notebook of the present invention
being held by one hand of a user while the other hand
manipulates a bar code reader over the bar codes in the
used by medical personnel and, in particular, to note
books which can be manipulated by such personnel
with one hand, freeing the user’s other hand to perform
tasks related to use of the notebook.
notebook;
FIG. 2 illustrates the inside of the notebook of FIG.
In many institutions such as a hospital, personnel are
called upon to perform numerous tasks while referenc O 1;
ing printed material or books in which information is to
FIG. 3 is an illustration of the outside of the notebook
be recorded. In hospital, for instance, medical personnel
of FIG. 2 showing the location of the adjustable strap;
are frequently called upon to visit patients’ rooms to
FIG. 4 is a cross-sectional view of the binding of the
notebook of FIG. 3; and
FIG. 5 illustrates a preferred embodiment of the
strap, which may be adapted to an existing notebook.
Referring first to FIG. 1, a looseleaf notebook 10 of
the present invention is shown in use. The notebook 10
record patient information or provide medical services
to the patients. An efficient means for recording such
patient information is through the use of a data record
ing system known at VitalnetTM , which has been de
veloped by Critikon, Inc. This system provides a central
monitoring unit at a centrally located nurse’s station,
and remote data entry terminals located in the patients’
has a front cover 12 and a back cover 14 which are
joined by a binding panel 16. Wrapped around the bind
ing panel 16 is an adjustable strap 20 with an adjustment
rooms. The remote data entry terminals may be con
nected to automated instrumentation for the remote
clip 22. The strap 20 may be made of a cloth-like mate
rial such as nylon or rayon.
such as automated blood pressure monitors. The remote
To use the notebook the user adjusts the adjustment
terminals also provide a means for entering speci?c 25 clip so that the strap 20 is loose enough to slide one hand
patient information into the system through keyboard
of the user between the strap 20 and the outside of the
and bar code reader devices.
binding panel 16. The user then inserts one hand be
To allow a systematic and unambiguous means for
tween the strap 20 and the binding panel 16 as shown in
collection of information relating to patients’ vital signs,
entering patient data, the Vitalnet TM system provides
for the entry of speci?c codes for speci?c patient condi
tions and functions. The easiest way to enter the data
without error is through the bar code reader. Each
remote terminal is accompanied by a listing of speci?c
patient conditions and functions encoded by the hospi
tal with corresponding optically readable bar codes. To
enter a bodily fimction such as “respiration”, the user
30
phantom in FIG. 1 by the hand 1 and opens the note
book . When the notebook is open the back cover 14 is
supported by the fingers of the hand and the front cover
12 is supported by the thumb and the heel of the hand.
The notebook is thus fully supported in the open condi
tion with one hand, freeing the other hand 2 to manipu
late a bar code reader 3 over the bar codes in the note
book, or to perform other functions.
The inside of the notebook is shown in FIG. 2. A
the bar code reader ‘over the bar code next to the word.
conventional three-ring notebook mechanism 40 is
“Respiration” would thereby be automatically and er
rorlessly entered into the system for that patient, and 40 shown affixed to the inside of the binding panel 16 of the
would find the word “respiration” in the listing and run
the user would then in a similar manner run the bar code
reader over bar codes next to numbers to enter the
numerical rate of the patient’s respiration.
Because the remote terminals are conventionally
notebook, with the three rings shown at 42. The ring
mechanism is riveted in place by two rivets 44, which
pass through the ring mechanism 40, the strap 20, and
the binding panel 16, thereby affixing the strap securely
mounted on a wall or stand next to a patient’s bed, there 45 between the binding panel and the ring mechanism. The
conventional end tabs 46 may be adjusted to open and
is no desk or other workstation available for use when
entering patient data from bedside. Accordingly, it is at
times difficult for hospital personnel to manipulate the
listings of patient conditions and the bar code reader
close the rings 42 when inserting or removing pages 30
held in one hand in this manner, the user’s other hand is
net TM system.
of the notebook. For use with the Vitalnet TM system,
these pages 30 are held in the notebook inside three-ring
while at the same time noting or measuring the patient’s so transparent plastic protectors 36. The pages 30 contain
listings of patient conditions printed in text as repre
vital signs. Moreover, these tasks must usually be per
sented at 32. Next to the textual entries are printed bar
formed while standing. It would be desirable then to
codes for each patient condition as represented at 34.
a?'ord an easy means for the hospital personnel to per
The pages 30 of text and bar codes are printed by the
form these simultaneous tasks.
In accordance with the principles of the present in 55 Vitalnet TM system in response to entries to a computer
entered by an operator. The‘ operator types the patient
vention, a looseleaf notebook is provided for retaining
conditions into the computer, and the computer then
bar code listings which denote the condition of a patient
automatically prints the textual patient condition and a
in a hospital. The notebook includes a belt or strap
corresponding
bar code. This enables the hospital to
which encircles the binding of the notebook. Preferably
prepare patient condition entries unique to the services
this strap is fixed in place between the notebook ring
it performs, with the patient condition listings being
mechanism and the inside of the binding panel of the
uniquely tailored to the conditions of its patients that
notebook. The strap is also preferably adjustable or
the hospital desires to monitor and record. As described
resiliently stretchable. The strap permits the notebook
above, hospital personnel will simply turn to the page
to be held open and manipulated by a user who slides a
hand between the strap and the binding panel while 65 containing the patient condition to be recorded and runs
the bar code reader over the corresponding bar code to
supporting the opened covers of the notebook with the
enter the particular patient condition into the Vital
thumb and ?ngers of the hand. With the notebook being
3
4,988,229
4
panel. Thus, the strap 60 with its slit 70 can be looped
A plan view of the outside of a notebook of the pres
ent invention is shown in FIG. 3, with a cross-sectional
view of the notebook binding shown in FIG. 4. These
over and installed in an existing notebook.
What is claimed is:
1. A notebook which may be manipulated in an open
condition
by one hand of a user comprising:
5
side of the binding panel 16 with the strap adjustably
FIGURES show the strap 20 passing around the out
a front cover and a back cover joined by a binding
closed by the adjustment clip 22. The adjustment clip 22
panel;
comprises a locking hinge 24 pivotally mounted on a
pivot rod 52 between two end" plates 50a and 50b of the
clip. As FIG. 4 shows, one end of the strap 20 is looped 10
around a fastening rod 54 of the clip and the end of the
strap is pinned in place by a pin 56. The other end 28 of
the strap passes between the locking hinge 24 and the
means, connected to the inside of said binding panel,
for retaining pages within the notebook;
a strap affixed to said binding panel and passing be
tween said retaining means and said binding panel,
other looped end of the strap. When the locking hinge
whereby a hand of a user may be inserted between
24 is pivoted upward as shown in the FIGURES the
said strap and the outside of said binding panel to
hold said notebook.
end 28 of the strap is secured in the clip by the compres
sion of formed teeth 26 of the hinge against the strap
material. The strap is adjusted by pivoting the locking
said strap being continuously connectable around
the outside of said binding panel,
2. The notebook of claim 1, wherein said notebook is
a looseleaf notebook, and said retaining means com
prises and adjustable ring mechanism for retaining
pages within said notebook by rings of said mechanism.
hinge 24 downward as indicated by the arrow in FIG. 4
to release the end 28 of the strap from compression
within the adjustment clip. In this way the strap 20 is
3. The notebook of claim 2, further comprising at
least one page, located within said notebook, and con
easily adjusted to accommodate the hand of any user.
In an alternative embodiment it may be desirable to
taining optically scanable bar codes,
whereby said notebook may be held in an open posi
replace the nylon or rayon strap and adjustment clip
tion with one hand while said bar codes are
scanned by a bar code reader held in the other
with an elastic strap passing around the outside of the
binding panel. The need for adjustment of the loop
hand.
4. The notebook of claim 2, wherein said strap passes
would stretch to accommodate the hand of the user
between said ring mechanism and the inside of said
between the strap and_the binding panel.
30 binding panel, and said ring mechanism and strap are
FIG. 5 illustrates a preferred embodiment of the pres
riveted to said binding panel.
ent invention in which the strap 60 is longitudinally
5. The notebook of claim 1, wherein said strap in
split. An upper end of the strap 60 passes through a ring
cludes an adjustment mechanism located on the contin
66, around a central bar (not visible in the drawing) of
uously connectable portion of said strap, for adjusting
formed by the strap would be obviated as the strap
a buckle 62, and back on itself. This end of the strap is
the length of said continuously connectable portion of
then sewn on either side of the ring 66 as indicated at 67
said strap.
6. The notebook of claim 1, wherein said strap is
formed of a substantially inelastic cloth-like material.
7. The notebook of claim 1, wherein said strap is
to secure the ring to the strap. The ring 66 is thereby
located at the top of the notebook binding, where it may
be used to hang the notebook on a hook near its place of
formed of an elastic material.
8. A strap for use with a looseleaf notebook including
use.
The other end 61 of the strap 60 passes around the
apex of a V-shaped lower bar 63 of the buckle, over the
central bar, and under the upper bar 65 of the buckle,
a mechanism for removably retaining pages within the
notebook, said mechanism extending along a substantial
length of the inside binding of the notebook, compris
ing: means for fastening said strap in an adjustable loop,
said loop having an inside portion and an outside por
tion, and a longitudinal slit extending along a substantial
length of the inside portion of said strap for dividing
said inside portion into two separable sides which may
thereby closing the strap in an adjustable loop.
The strap 60 is also seen to have a longitudinal slit 70
extending from the top of the strap at 72 to the bottom
at 74. The slit enables the strap 60 to be installed in any
existing notebook. To do so, the slit portion of the strap
is aligned over the notebook mechanism 40 on the inside
be inserted between said mechanism and said inside
of the notebook. The two slit sides of the strap are
binding of said notebook from opposite longitudinal
spread and each side of the strap slides between the
sides of said mechanism.
notebook mechanism and and the binding panel of the
9. The strap of claim 8, further comprising a ring
notebook from a respective side of the mechanism, as
fastened to said strap at a point on said strap which is
indicated by the dashed and dotted arrows. The rivets 55 near one end of said notebook mechanism.
44 which secure the mechanism to the binding panel are
10. The strap of claim 8, wherein said fastening means
comprises a buckle.
thereby located in the slit 70, and each side of the strap
i
i
i
t
t
is sandwiched between the mechanism and the binding
65