March 4, 2015
In August 2012, Mercy Medical Center in Dubuque, Iowa completed a $13 million renovation of their Intensive Care Unit which included steps to save time which, they say, leads to saving lives.
In conjunction with Spacelabs patient monitors, the Mercy ICU team implemented Clinical Access™, a new piece of technology which allows doctors to log onto a computer at home or at their office to view a monitor displaying the patient’s vital signs.
Upon opening the newly renovated ICU, Director Bob Wethal MHA, BSN, RN stated in an interview with KCRG News, “When the nurse is here and if a patient isn’t doing well, we can call the physician and instead of just explaining to them what we are seeing, they can actually see all the vital signs, see all the wave forms and see what the ventilator is doing.”
Director Wethal was referencing Spacelabs’ Clinical Access which allows doctors to access retroactive patient monitor values and trends where and when needed, in order to coordinate timely patient care from inside or outside the hospital.
Early in 2014, Director Wethal and his team at Mercy took another insightful step forward.
In sync with The Joint Commission’s 2014 alarm fatigue management mandate, Mercy implemented Spacelabs Assurance software, which is designed to help caregivers set appropriate individual patient care alarms, decrease false alarms and minimize alarm fatigue.
Assurance features such as alarm history bar, learned alarms, and tiered alarms alert hospital staff to changes in patient condition and allow caregivers to review information they may have missed while taking care of other patients.
We recently asked Director Wethal to share the impact that Assurance software has had on his staff and ICU patients.
“Assurance’s alarm history feature has helped encourage our doctors and nurses to review patient events and discuss appropriate alarm settings,” he said. “With Spacelabs bedside monitors and Assurance software, our nurses are better able to determine appropriate patient alarm limits and the numbers of alarms that occur in our ICU have decreased.”
Providing helpful solutions for health care providers dealing with alarms and interruptionsat the bedside is an important focus for Spacelabs Healthcare, in cooperation with national alarms management task forces and the Association for the Advancement of Medical Instrumentation (AAMI).
Since its origin inventing telemetry monitoring for NASA astronauts during the 1958 Gemini mission, Spacelabs Healthcare has focused on innovative solutions to support a safe and high quality care experience.
Spacelabs’ latest suite of monitoring products continues this rich tradition by allowing clinical staff to receive meaningful, actionable information about the status of their patients, and keep patients and their care teams connected to each other from near and remote locations.
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