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Visimobile: A Digital technology that can now take your vital signs - Inventions - Nurses Arena Forum

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Visimobile: A Digital technology that can now take your vital signs by Idowu Olabode : July 11, 2016, 12:51:06 PM
If you’ve ever stayed in the hospital, you know the discomfort and quasi-humiliation of having various nurses periodically come in to check your vital signs by poking and prodding you like a Thanksgiving Day turkey.

But for many patients, thanks to the un-touchy-feely world of digital technology, that may be about to change.

Holy Name Medical Center in Teaneck says it is the first hospital in the New Jersey-New York metropolitan area to use digital monitoring technology to continuously track patients’ vital signs.

The technology, called The ViSi Mobile device, is about the size of a business card. Patients wear it on their wrists, from where it transmits crucial information to clinicians on an ongoing basis. It is the first body-worn monitor that can non-invasively measure all core vital signs, including blood pressure, heart or pulse rate, electrocardiogram or heart rhythm, blood oxygenation, respiration rate and skin temperature, according to Holy Name officials.

The monitoring system runs on the hospital’s wireless network, and any abnormal changes in patients’ vital signs are sent to their primary nurses so they can receive immediate attention that will help prevent adverse outcomes.

The ViSi Mobile monitors a patient’s vital signs digitally, reducing the need for invasive checks.

Typically, nurses check patient vital signs during routine rounds that occur every six to eight hours. The intermittent checks can disturb patients, while only providing snapshots of vital sign data. With the ViSi system, if a patient’s vital signs move beyond selected ranges, the system’s alarm system will warn clinicians so they can act accordingly.

“While real-time patient monitoring is a trend that is just beginning to take hold in leading medical institutions throughout the nation, Holy Name has been testing this technology for years in conjunction with the Telemedicine and Advanced Technology Research Center of the U.S. Department of Defense,” said Michael Maron, Holy Name president and chief executive officer.

The hospital is currently piloting the technology on two large units — the orthopedic floor and the general surgical floor — with the eventual goal of expanding it to be used hospitalwide sometime in the future, according to hospital officials, who declined to say what the system costs.

“Vital signs are strange birds,” said Sheryl Slonim, Holy Name’s executive vice president for patient care services and chief nursing officer. “When you record vital signs and continually track them, you can see subtle changes that lead to major changes. For example, if you have an infection, we are able to pick up those early subtle warning signs before it culminates into something like sepsis,” she said of the blood infection that can attack organs, sometimes resulting in death.

Slonim stressed that the technology is not a replacement for the human touch. “We at Holy Name do continuous rounding on our patients, regardless of what technology is there. Nothing can replace monitoring with your eyes and ears. But it augments our care. It picks up things quicker so we can intervene quicker and prevent a major complication.”

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