Henry Mayo Newhall Hospital touted a ‘TeleSitter’ technology Wednesday that allows patients to be monitored constantly from a remote station.
“We have a profound responsibility to ensure that our patients are safe at all times,” said Jenn Castaldo, vice president and chief nursing officer at Henry Mayo. “What we’re seeing as our population ages, we have more and more patients who have dementia and some other comorbidities.”
AvaSure’s TeleSitter technology is a one-way video, two-way audio system that allows caregivers to survey patients who are identified as a “fall risk,” but have met the criteria to not need a physical body aid present.
“Falls occur at a rate of 3.3 to 11.5 times per 1,000 patient days,” said a AvaSure news release.
“That translates into up to 1 million patient falls per year, 26% of which result in some form of injury.”
This system has served over 1 million patients in over 800 hospitals, according to a Henry Mayo news release.
The system is a stand-alone device that stands at about 5 feet tall and needs to be plugged into an outlet. Patient care associates (PCA) monitor these devices and survey up to 12 patients at a time.
There is a PCA assigned to a station at all times, according to Castaldo.
Both a PCA and a patient can speak through the system. PCAs can only hear one room at a time through a headset, and audio to the patient is heard through the system. A PCA’s voice can be translated into about 20 different languages. Additionally, the voice can be changed to either a female or male voice, if the patient responds better to a certain one.
Volume can be adjusted if a patient is hard of hearing.
“It doesn’t record,” said Castaldo. “It is important for the community to know that when the patients are in the room it is not recording them; it really is as though you have a physical body sitter, but now it is done remotely.”
If a patient needs a bath, procedure or test done, there is a privacy setting that can be turned on by the nurse. A nurse will set the privacy timeframe and once the time is up, the nurse will turn off the privacy setting.
However, if time expires and privacy has not been turned off, the screen will flash red on the PCA’s monitor, which will prompt the PCA to ask if they need more time.
“Not only is it improving patient safety, but it is putting in all the precautions (that) we possibly can,” said Castaldo