More than two weeks have passed since the 2018 midterm elections, where an estimated 113 million voters turned out to cast their ballot on the local, state and federal levels. Although immigration, the economy and gun control were hot-button topics, multiple surveys revealed that healthcare was the No. 1 policy issue for both Democrat and Republican voters.
Now more than ever, hospital leaders are discovering their facilities must operate like a business to achieve financial stability. The problem? Most hospital leaders are making staffing, patient care and business decisions based on what they assume is solid, reliable data. But much of the time, helpful analysis is stymied by missing or incomplete information—or data that’s flawed. That’s why healthcare facilities should be turning to real-time, actionable, point-of-care data.
Technological innovation is accelerating at a rapid pace for hospitals, especially when it comes to digital health. Investment in digital health startups brought in a record $4.7 billion into the healthcare industry in 2017—and is set to grow even more this year. With hospitals under growing pressure to cut costs while delivering more affordable, higher quality care, more providers are leaning on data-driven technology to improve operational efficiency and clinical workflows, as well as interaction and engagement with patients. This technology is being integrated into care delivery, and it’s creating value for patients who increasingly expect the same convenience and experiences from healthcare providers, that they get from other industries.
Is upgrading your hospital’s patient care technology on your list of goals for the year? If so, you may be faced with a dizzying array of options when you sit down to evaluate the best technologies to implement into your facility.
Alarm fatigue can lead to medical errors and an unsafe hospital culture, according to a recent medical informatics study. But that’s not all: A less considered, but still valid pain point of unremitting and useless clinical alerts, is an overworked, dissatisfied staff.
As one of the nation’s leading cities for healthcare and technology jobs, Nashville is a hotbed for healthcare technology innovation and expertise, but that reputation didn’t evolve overnight. Nashville’s fast-growing healthcare technology scene is the culmination of decades of hard work and focused efforts by tech entrepreneurs like our own CEO David Condra.
With the healthcare industry rapidly shifting from fee-for-service to a pay-for-performance model and consumers becoming more invested in their healthcare choices, creating value has become a top priority for hospital leaders.
As hospitals make the arduous transition to providing value-based care, where reimbursements are directly tied to patient experience and outcomes, C-suite leaders are charged with balancing tighter budgets and stringent regulations with initiatives for improving patient care and satisfaction, streamlining operations and lowering costs.
Managing a hospital successfully can seem overwhelming in today’s changing operating environment. Providers must accept a larger share of financial risk for the outcomes they deliver, and patients are becoming savvier about their healthcare choices.
Rising to those challenges requires hospitals to break down the technological silos where clinical information gets stuck and can’t be shared across healthcare IT systems throughout the organization. Breaking these silos down—achieving interoperability—requires hospitals to get their systems and applications talking to one another, so they can exchange data in meaningful ways and use those insights to make the best care decisions.
From medical devices at the bedside to care collaboration and patient communication systems such as nurse call, hospitals need technologies with interoperable, open platforms that share information and insights in real time. That means they must look beyond the limitations of existing, outdated UL standards, which many use to measure the success of their healthcare IT systems. Simply complying with UL standards was sufficient when a nurse call system consisted of a light above the patient’s door and a bell at the nurse station. But with today’s healthcare demands, hospitals need a system that shares data, so nurses can efficiently manage growing patient loads and administrators can track the flow and delivery of care floor by floor.
Fortunately, an emerging set of technologies are capable of helping hospitals access, exchange and use point-of-care data more effectively across the patient journey. Gartner calls this group of technologies the Real-Time Health System (RTHS). RTHS technologies break down traditional barriers to sharing, analyzing and using information. Combining advancements in nurse call, clinical communication and collaboration, interactive patient care, and alarm management, these technologies leverage data, analytics and real-time communication tools, including mobile platforms, to improve the consistency and quality of care.
The Amplion Alert platform uses the best features of the RTHS to take patient care to the next level. While nurses deliver care to patients, the platform collects data at the bedside and flows the information into an integrated reporting and analytics portal that provides administrators with colorful, visualized reports. These insights give hospitals the information they need to better manage clinical teams, improve accountability across departments, and close communication and care loops with patients. Not only can hospitals use this information to enhance patient care and satisfaction, but they can also gain visibility to control labor costs and maximize reimbursements to drive better business results.
Hospital leaders are inundated with data that could potentially improve patient care, but outdated technologies, technological silos and the lack of interoperability between healthcare IT systems make efforts to tap into this insight fragmented and inefficient. Actually using this data to communicate, coordinate care and improve patient outcomes is a daunting task for clinicians and C-suite executives. As the healthcare industry makes the shift to value-based care, where reimbursement is directly tied to the quality of patient care, hospitals must overcome this hurdle so they can be more proactive about managing their patient populations.