When MultiCare Health System, a not-for-profit healthcare organization in Washington state, approached Wachter Healthcare Solutions seeking ways to use the newest technology in patient fall reduction to replace and improve upon its current video monitoring system, Wachter demoed its NOVA (Nursing Observation and Virtual Assistant) solution for MultiCare Operations and Logistics Manager Cindy Kratochvil, RN, BSN and her team.
NOVA is a virtual observation answer to expensive and resource-consuming 1:1 sitting. With this solution, virtual observers can watch up to 12 patients (depending on facility protocol and acuity of patients), leaving healthcare staff that would normally be sitting with 1:1 patients to continue performing their regular duties.
The Rise of Patient Monitoring Systems
Virtual patient observation (VPO) is becoming widely accepted in acute care facilities to aid in improving patient safety. VPO also assists with staffing efficiency and produces customizable reports, through which administration can collect data from the on-screen charting and system events.
MultiCare’s Challenge Finds a Patient Monitoring Solution
MultiCare Allenmore Hospital, located near the heart of Tacoma, was looking for a change from its current video monitoring system. The nursing staff needed a solution with more capability and reporting, as well as something the staff could customize and integrate into their existing infrastructure.
MultiCare chose Wachter’s NOVA solution because of “the ability to chart on the observation screen, the ability to retrieve reports, and [because] the picture definition is so much clearer both in day and night mode than what we were used to using,” said Kratochvil.
NOVA Product Trainer Kimberly McDonald, RN, BSN has experience working with MultiCare. In her role, McDonald provides product training on NOVA, use-case scenarios for NOVA, and provides best practice tips to clinical staff - both prior to the clinical implementation and at the go-live experience. McDonald has found that NOVA greatly aids in workflow efficiency.
"The NOVA solution can help nurses by keeping other clinical staff on the floor rather than taking staff off the floor for a 1:1 sitter situation, reducing call light fatigue, improving workflow, and improving staff response time," said McDonald.
Staff say that they find NOVA helpful as well.
Kristine, an LPN at the hospital, said they are now “able to keep our CNA’s on the floor instead of sitting with patients,” by having the customizable patient monitoring solution.
NOVA’s customizable features allow it to provide maximum effectiveness on the floor.
“I like that the alarm is very audible,” said Christen, an RN at MultiCare Allenmore.
And nurses say they feel more comfortable knowing their patients are being monitored.
Diane, an RN, said “I like that someone (our VCO) is watching the patient at all times.”
McDonald received feedback from the Observation Technicians in the VCO at MultiCare regarding "how user-friendly the NOVA solution has been, how the camera quality and zoom feature is crystal clear, and they have been excited about the new features recently implemented."
While customizing the NOVA solution to meet MultiCare’s needs, Wachter was also able to develop new features and functionality that is now available for all NOVA users. The flexibility to fully customize solutions for each client, and to constantly improve and iterate the solution as a whole, make NOVA unique.
"Nurses have really enjoyed the simplicity of NOVA," Ashley Kuruvilla, MSN, APRN, FNP-C, NOVA Business Development Manager and Clinical Support Specialist said. "Having a system that is easy to use and effective in maintaining patient safety is extremely important for healthcare providers."
Kuruvilla's role within Wachter is to serve as the subject matter expert on healthcare and leverages her background to educate hospitals on the use of NOVA. In this capacity, Kuruvilla aids hospitals in how to effectively use NOVA, assists with workflow implementation, and provide guidance on developing policy.
NOVA’s positive impact is seen at all levels, from floor staff to management.
Petra Betancourt, Nurse Manager at MultiCare Allenmore Hospital states, “I couldn’t agree more with my staff — [NOVA] is a useful tool to keep our workforce at their optimum.”
When asked if the future of patient monitoring is in VPO technology, Kuruvilla responded, "I absolutely believe so. I feel that advancements in technology can propel the healthcare industry and improve the delivery of care significantly."
"By being able to improve patient care, staff satisfaction, and cost efficiency, we can optimize healthcare in a whole new way."
About MultiCare Allenmore Hospital & Medical Center
MultiCare Allenmore Hospital & Medical Center offers Tacoma, WA residents convenient access to hundreds of primary and specialty care providers, the latest diagnostic and treatment technologies, plus a 24-hour Emergency Department all in a centrally located, patient-friendly campus.
Ready to learn more about NOVA from Wachter Healthcare Solutions? Contact us today.