Necessity is the mother of all inventions! At the Medanets User Days, we always invite our customers to brainstorm and innovate around key challenges in the healthcare systems. This year, the discussion revolved around challenges we face in healthcare outside the hospital.
In the workshop, we looked at healthcare system’s challenges in different countries as a key driver to innovation and future developments. We discussed if and to what extent Medanets could help solve challenges outside the four walls of the hospital.
Hospital at home – support needed for the whole process
The goal of delivering health care closer to people’s homes is not a new one – it has been an aspiration of numerous policy initiatives within respective organisations for many years. Policy makers hope that moving care out of the hospital will deliver the ‘triple aim’ of healthcare: improving population health and the quality of care for patients, while also reducing costs. Other key drivers to provide care outside the hospital are to provide a more person-centred care experience for individuals, avoiding the risks of healthcare-acquired infection, and/or institutionalisation. System factors, such as increasing pressure on acute care beds, and costs, are also influencing the development of hospital at home services. The aim is to put the person receiving health and social care and their priorities at the centre of decisions made about their care, recognising that one size does not fit all. These plans need to find credible ways of coping with rising demand, with no equivalent rise in funding.
The Medanets solution is already being used by district nursing teams and for hospital at home services in Finland. In the workshop, we examined how the mobile application could provide healthcare professionals with access to key patient lists and the patients’ clinical summaries, work lists and tasking, providing decision support within the documentation process. The participants agreed that the Medanets solution could help them tackle some of the challenges they had with delivering hospital at home services.
Ambulance – decision prompts for the fast-paced environment
In the prehospital environment, paramedics are required to make clinical decisions, often rapidly, to ensure that correct treatment and care are provided. Decisions made by paramedics have a major impact on the clinical outcome, and ultimately, the life, safety, health, and wellbeing of their patients.
Recently, healthcare systems have seen an increased demand on emergency services. The proportion of ‘life threatening’ or ’emergency’ category ambulance calls has increased from 69% to 78%. Small increases in handover times can lead to far greater increases in average response times. The increase in handover delays is a major contributor to the decline in ambulance performance. In July 2022, more than 1 in 10 ambulances waited for over an hour before they could hand their patients over to the hospital – up from almost 1 in 50 in 2019. In July 2022, waits exceeding the 15-minute standard reduced ambulance capacity by almost 20%.1
In the workshop, we discussed the impact a solution like Medanets could have on these challenges and patient outcomes. We evaluated the use of a mobile application integrated with hospital or ambulance systems as a tool for the paramedic to access key pertinent clinical summary of the patient and document the provided care. Furthermore, we assessed the solution’s ability to provide decision support within the fast-paced workflow and how it could help overcome some of the variance we are seeing today in the care process. The participants felt that the idea may be challenging to implement, as countries differ in the way they are delivering ambulance services. However, this was seen as a good potential use of the solution in countries where the ambulance systems are mature enough.
1. The Health Foundation (2022): Why have ambulance waiting times been getting worse? Accessed 24th May 2023.
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