With technology changing more each day, the U.S. government has taken steps to ensure that its hospitals and medical facilities keep pace. Through meaningful use requirements and implementation of electronic medical records (EMRs), healthcare organizations are moving forward in terms of quality of patient care and providing cost-effective services.
Throughout the integration process, healthcare IT consulting is key. Doctors, nurses and all staff members need to be properly educated in new systems and working with a hospital consultant that specializes in this area can be extremely beneficial for medical facilities.
Another area that is becoming more common in daily operations is cloud-based technology. The Mayo Clinic and Philips Research North America are currently working on a way to use cloud systems to help improve care and prevent errors in intensive care units. The Center for Medicare and Medication Innovation (CMMI) has awarded a $16 million grant for a three-year study of this approach.
Patricia Katzman, director of interoperability and CDS global marketing strategy for Philips Healthcare, told InformationWeek Healthcare that between 10 and 20 hospitals and health systems will aid in the development of the technology.
The main issue that will be addressed is information overload among ICU providers. A Philips press release stated that studies have shown that 27 percent of Medicare patients in ICUs face preventable treatment errors due to this overload.
The new system will include a secure, bidirectional connection to the cloud platform. From there, information can be analyzed, interpreted and sent back to medical facilities' care teams to be displayed and mobilized for alerts.
According to Katzman, the Mayo Clinic has used its alerting application locally in some of its hospitals with good results.
"It provides key information to ICU clinicians in a much more digestible way," allowing them to make better decisions at the point of care, she said to the source.