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Category: tele-sitting

Virtual Observation: 8 Things to Look for in a Solution

Considering implementing virtual patient observation technology within your healthcare organization? Here are eight key features and capabilities to make sure you ask potential vendors about as you evaluate solutions.

  1. Is the system flexible enough to support one-way and two-way audio and video capability? Video-based engagement can help care teams build rapport with patients, improving the overall experience. Other times you may want only one-way video capability – for example, if you want to observe the patient, but don’t need them to be able to see the remote observer.

  2. Does the camera have pan, tilt, and zoom capability that allows the remote observer to virtually navigate the patient room?

  3. Is there an alerting and notification system that allows virtual observers to deploy clinical staff to the patient bedside quickly when needed?

  4. Does the camera have night vision capabilities so that staff can clearly observe patients when the room is dark?

  5. Does the system support interpreter service integration to ensure equitable care for patients with limited English proficiency (LEP)? Look for solutions that support multiple languages and are available 24/7.

  6. What types of reporting and analytics does the system provide to help you demonstrate ROI back to your organization?

  7. Can the software be delivered with a mobile cart or wall-mounted system? Can the hardware be installed from the ceiling or the wall, based on your room configuration? If you already have camera capability in the room, can the software integrate easily into your existing telehealth system or will you need to use a different device for each application?

  8. Is the technology scalable? What additional costs might there be if you want to leverage the solution across multiple facilities? What are the applicable licensing fees?

Learn more about key considerations that can help ensure long-term ROI on your virtual patient observation initiatives by downloading our white paper Best Practices for Tele-Sitting and Virtual Patient Observation.

Three Keys to a Successful Virtual Patient Observation Program

As hospitals and health systems strive to offer high quality patient care in an efficient, cost-effective manner, many are turning to virtual patient observation. In lieu of 1:1 in-room sitters, virtual sitter programs leverage 24/7 monitored cameras to provide real-time remote observation. And, with a platform that allows one staff member to see a dozen patients on a single screen, other uses that are less event-based, such as catching unforeseen deterioration/sepsis, assessing cognition, wound monitoring, and interval-based status notes, are more readily applied at scale.

Beyond preventing negative outcomes, virtual observation, of course, also helps floor staff be more efficient, reassures patients and family members, and ensures that hour-to-hour needs can be more quickly addressed. With this type of technology, hospitals can support more patients without overextending their resources —a critical need as hospitals continue to face ongoing staffing shortages.

However, adopting any new technology or transitioning from an older system requires careful planning. To ensure a seamless implementation, consider these three keys to success:

With a successful implementation and proper training, you will begin seeing benefits of virtual observation, including:

For a closer look at the implementation process and benefits of a virtual sitter program, download the case study that details Caregility’s work with OhioHealth. With Caregility, OhioHealth was able to transition rapidly and seamlessly from a previous system to the new one in a single day with minimal downtime – and ultimately take an important step toward scaling telehealth services.