Telstra will install around 3,500 bedside computers in South Australian public hospitals to enable doctors and nurses to use clinical applications and access patient information.

The bedside computers will enable physicians to look at relevant health information, X- rays and test results on-screen.

The terminals will introduced in day surgery, aged care, chemotherapy, haematology and emergency departments, Telstra said.

The bedside computers will also provide patients with access to all terrestrial digital TV and radio stations, a range of pay TV channels, movies, a dedicated phone line and filtered internet access on a pre-paid basis.

Australian health minister John Hill said that, over the next 12 months, the 17in touch-screen computers will be implemented across eight metropolitan and four country hospitals.

"The computers will provide a clinical workstation for doctors and nurses and help standardise and improve clinical work practices across the whole health system," Hill added.

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The first installation will be at Noarlunga Hospital on 31 October 2011.