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Event-driven Care Team Communications Can Help Nurses Focus on Critical Alerts

Posted by Zebra N. America

May 1, 2017 at 8:00 AM

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Patient monitoring devices are literal lifesavers in the modern healthcare environment. From reporting changes in vital signs to signaling the end of an infusion or indicating a patient is trying to get out of bed, these monitoring devices provide critical visibility into the patient room when clinicians are busy elsewhere. 

But, with an ever-increasing number of devices providing these alerts and alarms, nurses can be overwhelmed with information. On average, nurses receive an alert almost every 90 seconds, which means upwards of 480 alerts popping up over the course of a 12-hour shift.

This never-ending stream of interruptions can make it difficult to focus on patient care. And, the frustrating part of it is that the vast majority of alerts don’t require any action at the patient’s bedside.

To help nurses focus on the alerts that require immediate action, healthcare facilities are integrating a new type of application into clinical mobility solutions: event-driven care team communications.

These applications use advanced algorithms to combine relevant data from a patient’s electronic health record (EHR) and other sources with alarm/alert data to automatically prioritize the alarms. High-priority alarms where patients require lifesaving treatments are flagged for immediate attention while notifications that don’t require immediate action are classified according to priority.

When clinicians receive a medical alarm notification, they can instantly access critical context about a patient, such as heart rate, reason for admittance and lab results, with a single touch on their mobile device. With just a few more taps, they can instantly communicate with the patient’s on-call healthcare team via secure text or a phone call. 

This not only allows clinicians to instantly initiate a secure messaging conversation, it also reduces the chance of communication errors because relevant alarm data and patient context are included within that secure communication exchange.

Event-driven solutions can also  integrate real-time staff assignments for optimal routing of alarms and automatically escalate the priority if the first caregiver is unable to respond.

Our new application brief shows how event-driven care team applications like Extension Healthcare’s Extension Engage™ are helping healthcare organizations reduce clinical interruptions, improve staff communications and enhance care coordination. The brief  includes seven key questions to ask when selecting an event-driven care team communications solution and testimonial quotes from clinicians where these solutions have been implemented.  

Download the application brief today to learn more.

Topics: Mobility, Healthcare, North America