Past Events Using Advanced Rules for Insight into Past Events

Using a “leads off” intervention policy scenario we distinguish between first generation and second generation alarm management systems. Assume your hospital has implemented a policy that calls for patient monitoring leads to be repositioned with skin prep every 24 hours. The intent is to reduce the number of “leads off” events and ensure patients are being monitored appropriately. More so, by implementing such policies your hospital will reduce disturbance of preventable alarms and thus, alarm fatigue. With a first generation approach, once the policy has been implemented one would need to retroactively pull data from the patient monitoring system to determine if the policy is or is not working. With the Engage next generation alarm management system, hospitals can configure rules that will automatically notify – in real time – nursing leaders, quality control, or other appropriate staff of past events. For example, Engage would send an automated notification to the responsible party on his or her wireless communication device that a patient has had 3 “leads off” alarms in the past 12 hours.

Extension’s next generation alarm management middleware allows hospitals to address individual patient outliers, staffing education needs, and review overall policy for improvements.

Another Advanced Rules Example: Comparing Past Labs

Another simple but radical example of Extension’s ability to process advanced rules can be taken from a real use case. A hospital using Extension requested that all creatine test results for any patient 55 years or older with a diagnosis code of renal failure – regardless of if the results were normal or not – to be stored in the Extension database and for abnormal results to be sent to the appropriate healthcare staff. If at any point the patient’s health began to decline or the patient seriously exhibited symptoms of rapidly declining renal failure, the attending physician would then need to order a Blood Urethra  Nitrogen (BUN) test and compare its results to past creatine levels. Unlike other alerting vendors who could only notify healthcare staff of an abnormal lab, Extension automatically sends past creatine test results and BUN results for comparison so the healthcare staff can make informed and immediate decisions on how to treat the patient.

In an environment where an advanced rules engine is not utilized the doctor would likely receive the results and call the unit secretary who would then page the nurse to discuss treatment. In the “without Extension” scenario, there is a delay in communication between the nurse and physician. Studies show that in an average hospital, there are more than 80,000 phones calls made per month between physicians and nurses just trying to establish communication about patients. Extension Engage processes information about the patient, physician, and nurse enabling it to send the results simultaneously to the physician’s smartphone and nurse’s wireless phone. The contextual data provided by Extension equips the caregivers with all the information they need to react quickly and appropriately.

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