The Smart Magazine About Medical Technology Innovations

#13 - Rehacare Special Issue

Innovating to Transform the Patient’s Journey


Courtesy of New York-Presbyterian Hospital

Based in metropolitan New York, the NewYork-Presbyterian is one of the United States most highly rated and biggest hospitals. Providing care for more than two million patients with a staff of nearly 29,000 healthcare professionals is a challenge that can be more readily met by embracing new technologies.

The NewYork-Presbyterian launched its “Innovation Center” in 2014, in response to the proliferation of new healthcare tools including mobile health, home monitoring, patient engagement, data analytics, predictive modelling, provider communication, and social media that were becoming available.  

Two Key Groups : Patients and Providers

According to their Chief Information Officer Daniel Barchi, “we are a leading academic medical centre therefore we needed to be on the forefront of these healthcare innovations. Additionally, we wanted to better identify situations where technology solutions could be successfully applied throughout NYP”. The overriding goal was to deliver the best technology-enabled solutions for two key groups: patients and their families, as well as the providers (all employees of the hospital, doctors, etc.).

“Patients now experience these innovations at various touch points in their journey throughout NewYork-Presbyterian” says Chief Innovation Officer, Dr. Peter Fleischut. When patients check into the hospital, they immediately enter the system by a palm identification scanner. This time saved at admission helps to considerably shorten on the overall length of stay.

Tablets for Patients

Once patients are in their bed, they are able to see their patient whiteboard, which provides any information about their care that they might want to know: the names and photos of their care team, important phone numbers, and their planned treatments for the day.

In addition, they can use the patient tablets. These tablets have Internet access, giving patients the opportunity to regularly connect with friends and family. The tablets also allow the patients to adjust features of their schedule and environment, which gives them more control over their stay. The tablets give the patient access to their health records and treatment plan, in order to give them more knowledge about the process and de-mystify anything that might be confusing.

An app for instant alerts

Meanwhile, the providers are using mobile applications the innovation centre has developed such as “NYP Notifyto receive instant alerts, which allows care to be more responsive, and significantly reduces the amount of time e.g. that a patient is in pain. Finally, before the patient is discharged, they have an opportunity to use “NYP Patient Voice”, a survey tool that NYP uses for education and for feedback.

Outcome measures have been put in place to evaluate the effectiveness of the new technologies. Time has been saved for both providers and the hospital. Using for example, NYP Connect, a mobile directory and communication tool, communication is accelerated and call centre volume reduced, this streamlines treatments and consultations saving 100 hours a day for every 500 providers.

Increasing Access to Hospitals and Doctors

Feedback from patients suggests that they and their families feel more comfortable, thanks to services such as auto-texting which automatically alerts families about the patients’ status during a procedure. Like the doctors, patients feel empowered by receiving more information. Long term, the Centre hopes to inspire a cultural change at their hospitals, fostering an interest and awareness of innovation, and supporting the staff in creating the next technological breakthroughs in healthcare.  

The latest technological innovation the hospital launched recently is the “NYP App”. This is a free, easy-to-use application to increase access to the group’s hospitals. Users will be able to take advantage of online services such as an online payment system and GPS technology that provides accurate directions within the hospital buildings.

Finally, in the future, they will be able to directly connect with doctors for a variety of services, including a follow-up appointment or a second opinion on a treatment or diagnosis. “The idea” said Peter Fleischut “is to keep adding features to the NYP App to further improve our patients’ experiences at NYP”.

About the Author

Jane MacDougall is a freelance medical writer and journalist based near Paris.

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