its all about managing change
the pen is an ideal solution for the transition to a full electronic patient record, you can't just transfer the staff over to laptops, tablets etc.. it will fail almost immediately
you have to manage the change and take is slow, this is why so many projects within the NHS have failed, to much to quickly.
the pen enables them to still use the paper and with the added benefit of a mobile device, access to email, appointments, information. once they are used to this then phase out the pen .
i am all for the reduction in paper, the NHS has to be largest user of paper in the UK. You cant just give them a full electronic patient system