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Clinically Distanced Monitoring – keeping Patients and Clinicians Safe

During the peaks of the Covid-19 pandemic, the last place you wanted to find yourself was in a hospital. The high incidence of severe cases of Covid-19 among hospital clinicians was a reflection of just how dangerous their work is when it brings them face-to-face with patients suffering from a highly contagious virus.

Minimizing the risk to clinicians has been one of the key learnings from this experience, along with the need to be able to scale patient care rapidly and flexibly, the need to provide earlier diagnoses and interventions and the need to learn fast and deploy staffing resources as efficiently as possible.

In all these requirements, remotely distanced wireless patient monitoring holds the key.

Minimizing the risk to hospital staff

The exposure to high volumes of Covid-19 sufferers has been pinpointed as one of the reasons why the impact on clinicians who have contracted the virus has been so acute. The more patients can be kept away from hospital, the less the intensity of contagion in the hospital environment and thus the lower the risk to hospital staff.

Where hospitalization is unavoidable, use of wireless monitoring reduces the need for physical contact with patients and thus the risk of contagion, while maximizing clinical staff workflow productivity and providing early notification of changes in patient health status. . Traditional wired monitors obstruct patient movement and require clinical staff to wear PPE (often in short supply) to enter quarantine rooms to conduct frequent physical checks of patients.

Discharging patients with confidence

Keeping patients out of hospital is highly desirable at all times, and particularly during a pandemic. Remote patient monitoring enables clinicians to discharge patients who do not need the level of attention provided by a hospital but do need to be monitored for any signs of deterioration.

Safe at home, or at non-hospital clinics, patients connected to their clinical team via a remote monitoring system, enjoy the confidence and reassurance of knowing their vital signs are being monitored continuously, without the stress and risk of contagion they might encounter in hospital.

Should signs of deterioration be detected, early intervention can be initiated and patients brought into the hospital for urgent treatment.

Monitoring patients at scale

The administration and logistics involved in providing face-to-face healthcare at a hospital is a burden that stretches many providers to breaking point. Throw in a pandemic and the system breaks down. It is impossible to meet the sudden rise in demand.

Remote patient monitoring is scalable because it doesn’t require appointments at set times with individual clinicians. Instead, hundreds of patients can be monitored by a small team of clinicians at the same time. And if demand suddenly rises, it can be absorbed without vast increases in staff or infrastructure.

This has a double benefit: it reduces the impact on hospitals, allowing them to concentrate on the most acute cases; it also keeps patients with other conditions away, which increases their safety as well as that of hospital staff.

Faster learning saves lives

The more clinicians can learn about contagious diseases like Covid-19, the faster they can find effective treatments and prevention strategies. Remote patient monitoring provides unprecedented volumes of data, overlaying vital signs monitoring with patient feedback, which helps to fill out the picture with greater detail and identify patterns.

More reliable, beat by beat, real-time monitoring helps to close care gaps and smooth out workflow inefficiencies, meaning hospitals can provide a better service with better outcomes for patients.

When a pandemic like Covid-19 strikes it highlights an often overlooked fact: that the work of hospital staff is risky. There are many ways to mitigate this risk: reducing hospital numbers, providing more detailed and accurate feedback, reducing the workload and, of course, eradicating the disease. Remote patient monitoring provides a big step forward in every way.

Caretaker Medical is a Wireless Digital Health company that has developed a continuous ‘beat-by-beat’ Blood Pressure and Vital Signs monitor that eliminates blind spots between traditional intermittent spot-check monitors and untethers patients from mobility-restricting wires and hoses. The FDA-Cleared Caretaker4 wireless monitor utilizes a simple finger cuff and patented Pulse Decomposition Analysis technology to measure uninterrupted blood pressure, hemodynamics, and other parameters for wire-free, “touchless” remote patient monitoring that maximizes patient comfort and clinical decision-making. For more information, please visit www.CaretakerMedical.net.

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