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A Consumer View of Healthcare Reforms and IoE driven Healthcare IT Innovations

April 20, 2014 at 9:09 pm PST

In the past, they were called ‘Patients’, today their mindset and their behavior patterns have changed; they are called ‘Consumers’ of healthcare. They just don’t look at healthcare to consume the services when they are sick, but see it as a means to help them maintain their wellness and remain healthy. They want to be in the driver’s seat, and they want to be empowered and be part of the care decisions.

The Health Care Reforms and Health Care Internet of Everything (IoE) have accelerated the adoption of ‘consumer like’ behavior. From its focus on increased access to care and information, prevention and wellness, the meaningful use criteria calls for specific metrics such as the need for at least 5% of patients to send secure messages to providers. These have accelerated the use of patient portals and mobile apps and wellness devices. According to a report by Research and Markets, the mobile health market is expected to reach $26 billion in revenue by 2017.

Earlier this week, I was presenting at a security conference, the SecConX conference 2014 on the subject ‘At the Security Crossroads of Health Care Reforms and IoE enabled e-health’. I started off the presentation with a slide with three questions to gauge the audience’s adoption of consumer grade fitness devices, patient portal and mobile apps.

Guaging Consumer Adoption of Fitness devices, Patient portals and Mobile Apps

Gauging Consumer Adoption of Fitness devices, Patient portals and Mobile Apps

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Moving Patient Care Forward

When entering a hospital today, you’ll find a familiar and reassuring sight: hospital staff dedicated to physically monitoring and comforting patients who are confused or agitated, at risk for falls, wandering, and so on. While absolutely necessary, having a patient under constant monitoring by hospital employees, or nonhospital “patient sitters,” can lead to skyrocketing costs. At times, hospitals are not reimbursed for these expenses, meaning patient’s families are asked to provide sitters at their own expense -- imposing a burden for working family members.

With this in mind, we asked a question: How can patient observation costs be reduced while still providing the necessary care and attention patients need?

Enter: Virtual Assistance

Using HD video and two-way communication, healthcare organizations can dramatically drop the cost of patient observation. With virtual observation, trained staff in a central location can monitor multiple patients, notifying hospital staff onsite just as quickly as if they were physically there. To sweeten the deal, a virtual deployment runs over the hospital’s existing network without high-cost infrastructure installations or updates.

Virtual Patient Observation

Virtual Patient Observation

Providing Personal Attention

Park Nicollet Health Services, a nonprofit, integrated healthcare system located in St. Louis Park, Minnesota, deployed Cisco’s virtual patient observation solutions to solve several challenges they faced:

  • Continuous observation of patients deemed at-risk in the hospital’s fall reduction program
  • Management of staff for 1:1 observation of priority and less severe monitoring cases
  • Coverage of multiple rooms with limited nursing staff, maximizing quality of care

With Cisco IP Cameras and Cisco Video Surveillance Manager, Park Nicollet has deployed video patient bedspace monitoring over their existing network, adding a “second set of eyes” to their team. The deployment has increased bedside care time for Registered Nurses and enhanced the environment for care, which has been reflected in Patient Care Scores.

Watch below as Eric Paine from Park Nicollet discusses the deployment during one of our recent roundtables:

Used as part of the hospital workflow, the Cisco Virtual Patient Observation solution can also:

  • Reduce risk and exposure for patients and operations
  • Improve communications between clinicians and staff providing specialized patient monitoring
  • Enhance bedside response by providing the caregiver with more information

Learn more about how Cisco is moving healthcare forward and be sure to watch this webinar on Healthcare Security Force Management Best Practices.

 

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