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Medical Device Integration Blog

Capsule’s Final Four® reasons to connect at HIMSS 2015

Posted by Capsule on Apr 02, 2015 @ 04:00 AM

There are more than a handful of reasons to connect with Capsule at this year’s HIMSS Conference in Chicago, IL, and none of them include the Samsung Tablet we are giving away. With less than 10 days to showtime, we have narrowed the list down to the top four.

1. Meet around a table, not a kiosk

With two private conference rooms, tables for eight, presentation monitors, and snack amenities to ensure our conversations are clear, engaging, and efficient, we're ready to host you. (We understand we are not the only people you need to meet with.) To make it easy, schedule a appointment ahead of time.

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Tags: Medical Device Information System, Events, Capsule News

Wish List

Posted by Halley Cooksey, RN on Nov 13, 2014 @ 10:18 AM

The holiday season seems to have officially kicked off this past weekend. It seems to happen earlier each year. Gone are all the witches, bats, and ghoul decorations. In their place are festive trees strung with lights, with only the occasional Thanksgiving turkey to break things up. Soon we’ll face the barrage of commercials advertising the countless ways we can spend our holiday budgets. Many of us will spend hours listening to our children and grandchildren describe in very finite detail all the things they have placed on their wish list and how they promise to behave so they’ll get as many of the coveted gifts as possible.

Like our children, as adults we also have wish lists for our toys and that can extend into our professional lives. As nurses we have wish lists for things that will make our work life not only easier, but also allow us to truly practice our profession – caring for patients. Do you have a wish list? What sort of things do you wish for to help you in your daily practice? Do you wish for the kind of technology that can enhance your nursing practice and not hinder or slow it down? We know that no amount of technology will ever be able to replace our assessment skills, our ability to connect with a patient or their family members. There isn’t any form of technology that can console them during a very trying time; nor can technology wipe away a tear or put a band-aid over an injection site. However, we also know that technology can help free up the time for us to give our patients the kind of attention they need and that we want to provide.

If you could create a wish list of the things technology could do for you as nurse, what would you put on it and why? Would you wish for tools that could decrease the amount of time you spend documenting in a patient’s record? Or, perhaps a technology that could help you see the subtle changes in your patients and could alert you that they are beginning to decline and are in need further intervention? We want to hear your thoughts!

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Tags: Medical Device Connectivity, Medical Device Integration, Nurses, Health IT, Healthcare Technology, Nursing Stories, Medical Device Information System, Clinical, Clinical Documentation

Applying Technology in Nursing: Lessons to be Learned From Other Industries

Posted by Karen Lund, RN BSN on Nov 04, 2014 @ 10:17 AM

Technology will not replace nurses at the bedside, but applied appropriately can enable nurses to work smarter rather than harder, and help alleviate some of our complex practice issues. Yes, we need better staffing ratios, work environments and benefits for when our aging baby boomer population requires more care.  But we also need to provide nurses with the right technology tools and support to enable them to deliver the best care possible.  In fact, if we can make nursing “cool” from a technology perspective, then perhaps more young people would be attracted to the profession and help alleviate some of our nursing shortage. 

Just as nursing theory has drawn from professions like psychology, sociology, physiology, anthropology and other disciplines to create better nursing practices, we should also draw from cutting edge technologies to help us provide better and more efficient care at the bedside.  For example, just as manufacturing applied Toyota’s “lean” strategy, nursing has started applying it to health care by giving nurses the power to change their environment to support their ability to deliver better patient care.  But there are still many, many ideas we can borrow from other industries. Waiters in restaurants, for example, can order food from the kitchen using a handheld device while customers are giving their food order.

As nurses, we should be able to order and/or charge supplies, chart medications, take and post pictures and chart all from one device. Nurses should be able to monitor patient vital signs, and automatically record changes to the Electronic Medical Record (EMR) and receive notification of trending changes. 

The technology solutions to achieve these simple, yet time and resource consuming tasks is available today, but have sadly been slow to adopt. I challenge you to ask you hospital why not? Why aren’t they using the technology that would help nurse to give better, more efficient, safer care to patients?
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Tags: Medical Device Connectivity, Medical Device Integration, Healthcare Technology, Medical Device Information System, Medical Device Data

Time. It’s What Med-Surg Nurses Need Most to Care for Patients

Posted by Cyndi Coyne, RN on Aug 27, 2014 @ 11:01 AM

I read an article a few weeks ago that truly blew me away. It first caught my attention in Becker’s Hospital Review, but I have since seen it appear in other publications, such as the Wall Street Journal. It was about bringing nurses back to the bedside. You may be thinking “Isn’t that where they are already?” But here’s the big surprise. The article was about Novant Health in North Carolina and their initiative to free-up nurses so they can spend more time doing what they do best: taking care of patients.

It all began when hospital leaders wanted to know how much time nurses actually spent in patient rooms during a 12 hour shift. What they found was shocking to me, at first. It was only 2 ½-3 hours! They weren’t alone; other healthcare organizations had similar findings. Still, that really floored me! But then I recalled when I was a bedside nurse and I have to admit, considering the nurse/patient ratios and all the activities involved in caring for the average med-surg patient, 2 ½-3 hours sounds about right. I often commented that although it may have taken me five minutes to complete a task, it took more than twice as long to gather the supplies … sometimes having to call or even go to another department … then round up a co-worker to provide an extra set of hands, and afterwards, of course, document it all. With shorter patient stays, quicker patient turnover, and older, sicker patients, med-surg nurses are really squeezed.

Novant decided to do something about it and set an ambitious goal—70% of nurses’ time (or 8.5 hours of a 12 hour shift) spent in patient rooms. To develop a plan to accomplish this, they gathered a group of 40 nurses from across their healthcare system. Wisely, they engaged their own experienced nurses to brainstorm solutions instead of hiring an outside consulting group to swoop in, do a big study, and then dictate a plan of action. The nurses studied process flow and discovered the top activities that pulled them away from the bedside: hunting for supplies, tracking down medications, filling out paperwork, and looking for test results.

The battle plan they developed involved implementing a care team approach that called for LPNs, CNAs, pharmacy techs, and other support staff, to rally around the RN to ensure all of a patient’s needs would be addressed. This included some adjustments in each person’s role so that each team member functions to the full extent of their training and licensing.

In addition, they relocated supplies either in or closer to patient rooms; brought medications to the point-of-care; and implemented an EMR with physician order entry, along with a computer workstation in each patient room. This was all aimed at reducing the required steps in caring for the patient along with documenting that care. Bringing everything the patient needs to the point of care—what a revolutionary idea!

Integral to this strategy was automating the capture of medical device data, which freed-up the clinician from the manual process of entering data into the patient record; not to mention increasing the accuracy of the data, as well. It’s an essential tool that allows nurses more time to focus on the most important part of their job—the patient.

Research proves the more time nurses spend at the bedside, the fewer patient falls, the fewer medication errors, the higher the patient satisfaction rates, and the lower the infection rates. Furthermore, nursing satisfaction also increases, leading to lower nurse turnover. Med-surg units are the backbone of any hospital. Easing the workload of this vital group can only lead to good things.

Oh, and by the way, Novant reached their goal. Nurses are now spending 72% of their time in patients’ rooms allowing them to not only care for their patients, but also keep patients and their families better informed regarding post-hospital care, ways to improve their health, and the prevention of subsequent hospitalizations. Very impressive Novant! Bravo!

How much time do you think nurses at your hospital are engaged in direct patient care?
What measures have been instituted in your organization to increase nurses’ time at the bedside?

We're Discussing MDI in Med-Surg Today at 2:00pm EDT!

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Tags: Medical Device Connectivity, Medical Device Integration, Nurses, Medical Device Information System, Med-Surg

Med-surg and device integration: Why not?

Posted by Susan Niemeier, MHA, BSN, RN on Aug 21, 2014 @ 03:11 PM

  • Med-surg is a demanding, operationally intense care environment. The majority of a hospital’s patients are located in med-surg and generally, the unit provides most of its revenue. In fact, med-surg is described as the hospital’s “backbone”, and it can be argued that it is the most important department in an acute care facility.

  • Med-surg nursing units have the highest nursing turnover rate (>24%) compared to other nursing departments. Without intervention, med-surg will turn over their nursing staff every four years. The cost of turnover is two times the annual salary for this position, averaging around $100,000 per nurse. This has a profound impact on hospitals’ margins.

  • Med-surg units drive patient satisfaction opinions. Nurses cite work pressure and loss of control as the most common predictor of organizational work dissatisfaction. Med-surg nursing units are the last area in which patient’s reside and often the area that has the greatest impact on their perception of care. Consider the impact on measuring patient satisfaction through HCAHPS, which enables comparisons to be made across hospitals.

 

So, why talk med-surg and device integration? The frontline clinicians who work on the med-surg unit represent an essential and costly resource. Maximizing their effectiveness and efficiency is critical to hospital operations and the promotion of safe patient care, which is precisely what medical device integration is designed to do. I hope the data points above express the importance of supporting med-surg clinicians with the tools they need to do their job.

 

Register To Learn More

Expanding Medical Device Integration to Med-Surg 

Wednesday August 27, 2014, @ 2pm - 3pm ET 

Susan Niemeier MHA, RN, Chief Nursing Officer at Capsule

Register Here.

 

 

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Tags: Medical Device Connectivity, Medical Device Integration, Medical Device Information System, Med-Surg

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