Metro Health – University of Michigan Health Uses Vocera Solution to Save Time and Brain Cells
Smartphone app helps improve physician communication and accelerate stroke treatment
Teams of specialty physicians are using the Vocera communication application on smartphones and computers to connect and collaborate quicker and more efficiently with emergency medical services (EMS), neurology, radiology, nursing, the laboratory and pharmacy. Before the ambulance even arrives at the hospital’s emergency department (ED), the right people have already been activated and the life-saving drugs are readily available.
“Saving time is critical to saving brain cells and saving lives. The reduction in our door-to-needle time translates to roughly 48 million brain cells being saved,” said Dillon Fassett, Process Improvement Coordinator of Metro Health’s Comprehensive Stroke Center. “This communication process has affected nearly every single patient we have treated.”
The high impact communication process was co-designed by Metro Health physicians and IT leaders in partnership with external EMS crews to improve care and outcomes for stroke patients. Using the secure communication app on their smartphones, paramedics send pre-arrival notifications with contextual patient information, such as name, age, medical record number, and state of health, to members of the hospital’s stroke team.
“Better communication enables our care teams to provide higher levels of care and leads to better outcomes, which is why we are all here,” said Thomas Fantin, Vice President of Information Technology at Metro Health. “We are grateful to have a communication tool like the Vocera solution. It helps us stay connected in real time, move people and resources faster, and provides greater collaboration for physicians who might not even be in the hospital.”
More efficient communication has also improved the hospital’s median door-to-groin time, which went from 114 to 84 minutes, and the median door-to-recanalization decreased from 148 to 125 minutes. When stroke occurs because of large vessel blockage, faster restoration of blood flow to organs and tissues leads to better outcomes for the patient.
Because of these stats and many other improvement initiatives, Metro Health was the first health system in the Grand Rapids area to attain HIMSS Level 7 status, the most prestigious distinction in the use of electronic medical record technology to improve patient care.
“The sophisticated use of healthcare technology puts Metro Health in elite company,” said Brent Lang, president and CEO at Vocera. “We are very proud to support this innovative University of Michigan Health affiliate and help its care teams inside and outside the hospital save valuable time to improve the lives of their patients.”
Use of Vocera technology supports many clinical workflows at Metro Health. The hospital recently started using it in virtual medicine processes. Clinicians use the Vocera smartphone app to notify physicians at the University of Michigan when telemedicine consults are needed for patients in the ED and ICU. Reading the text message, which may include images, vital signs and other contextual information, physicians can do a pre-assessment on the patient before the video consultation.
About Metro Health – University of Michigan Health: As an affiliate of University of Michigan Health, Metro Health provides a world-class system of leading-edge healthcare services with its patient-centric, holistic approach. The 208-bed hospital anchors Metro Health Village in Wyoming, Michigan, serving more than 250,000 patients annually. More than 61,000 emergency patients are treated each year at the hospital, a Verified Level II Trauma Center. Primary and specialty care services are provided at 30 locations throughout West Michigan. More than 500 staff physicians provide state-of-the-art treatment for a full array of health needs, including for cancer, heart and vascular disease, stroke and trauma. As a certified Comprehensive Stroke Center and accredited Chest Pain Center, Metro Health provides specialty services that include neurosciences, pulmonology, gastroenterology, cardiology, endocrinology, OB/GYN, bariatrics, orthopedics, pediatrics and wound care. In 2018, Metro Health was the only Grand Rapids area hospital included among the “101 Best and Brightest Companies to Work For” by the National Association of Business Resources. The hospital is committed to promoting health and wellness through the Metro Health Hospital Foundation, Live Healthy community outreach classes and educational programs. For more information visit www.metrohealth.net, follow us on Twitter @MetroHealthGr and like the hospital on Facebook.com/MetroHealth
The mission of Vocera Communications, Inc. is to simplify and improve the lives of healthcare professionals and patients, while enabling hospitals to enhance quality of care and operational efficiency. In 2000, when the company was founded, we began to forever change the way care teams communicate. Today, Vocera offers the leading platform for improving clinical communication and workflow. More than 1,850 facilities worldwide, including nearly 1,600 hospitals and healthcare facilities, have selected our clinical communication and workflow solutions. Care team members use our solutions to communicate and collaborate with co-workers by securely texting or calling, and to be notified of important alerts and alarms. They can choose the right device for their role or task, including smartphones or our hands-free, wearable Vocera Smartbadge and Vocera Badge. Interoperability between the Vocera Platform and more than 140 clinical and operational systems helps reduce alarm fatigue; speed up staff response times; and improve patient care, safety, and experience. In addition to healthcare, Vocera is at home in luxury hotels, aged care facilities, nuclear power facilities, schools, libraries, retail stores, and more. Vocera solutions make a difference in any industry where workers are on the move and need to connect instantly with team members and access resources or information quickly. In 2017, Vocera made the list of Forbes 100 Most Trustworthy Companies in America. Learn more at http://www.vocera.com and follow @VoceraComm on Twitter.
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