Tampere University Hospital Uses the Mobile Photo Feature: Improved Patient Safety, Quality of Care and Experience

The mobile photo feature, developed together by Medanets and Neagen, was successfully piloted in Tampere University Hospital. As a result, the feature was taken into production use. The feature was part of the extensive Medanets implementations carried out in Pirkanmaa Hospital District in October and November, and it was taken into use at 24 wards in the Tampere University Hospital. The implementation was carried out in good cooperation with Istekki Oy.

The mobile photo feature was piloted by inpatient wards and outpatient clinics of three Tampere University Hospital divisions, including units specialised in areas ranging from dermatology, wounds and oncology to musculoskeletal problems. Common for the pilot units is that they are active in medical disciplines where visual information may play a central role. For example, the easiest way to determine or monitor the condition of skin or wound healing processes is by images. According to the feedback from the pilot, the advantages of the solution can be summarised as improved patient safety, improved quality of care, and better experience.

Photos stored directly in the right place without compromising patient safety

The improvement of patient safety is one of the themes highlighted in the pilot’s final report. Previously, photos were transferred from a digital camera to a computer with a USB cable before being uploaded to the Electronic Health Record. This involved the risk of the photos being uploaded to the records of the wrong patient. When using mobile clinical photography, the patient is first identified with a wristband, and the photos taken with the application are transferred automatically to the same patient’s records.

The fact that the photos are uploaded directly to the right patient’s records, without the need for any additional scans, improves patient safety and makes the information accessible in the right place in real time.

Feedback from oncology inpatient ward 2, Tampere University Hospital

According to the feedback, another factor that improves the accuracy of information is that the application supports naming the photo right when it is taken. This minimises the risk of getting different sides of the body (left/right) mixed up, for example.

Read more about the significance of information security in the context of clinical photography.

Improved quality of treatment through mobile photos

The mobile photo feature is an easy way to get information about the patients’ wounds, skin redness and other lesions. Skin or tissue lesions can be made visible in real time to all parties involved in the treatment process, allowing for effortless monitoring of the lesions and quick reactions.

It is also a way to save costs: it is no longer necessary to open and replace expensive wound treatment products with new ones only for the purpose of checking the condition of the wound. A recent picture taken during a regular wound treatment process is enough.

The quality and speed of the treatment process, including its data transmission and consultation phases, are improved. According to the feedback, also physicians can access the visual information more quickly thanks to the mobile application.

Mobile photos are very useful in wound treatment. The app makes all appointments faster and easier. We take photos of nearly all wounds and, now that the photos do not need to be separately uploaded, our work is considerably faster.

Eveliina Koivusalo, nurse, Centre for Musculoskeletal Diseases, Tampere University Hospital

Smoother workflow and improved experience

According to the feedback, the previous method of taking a photo with a digital camera and transferring it to a computer before uploading it to the patient’s records, was arduous and time-consuming. The mobile application transforms the workflow into a single phase, which allows for nurses to focus on tasks related to treatment instead of using a computer.

The process of taking and saving photos has become significantly faster. This frees up the nurses’ time for actual patient care instead of accessing different systems on a computer.

Feedback from the Centre for Musculoskeletal Diseases, Tampere University Hospital

In addition, it is no longer necessary to bring a camera to each appointment; instead, the camera is integrated into the nurse’s mobile device, providing constant readiness to take photos.

You no longer need to carry different devices with you. All features are incorporated into a single device.

Feedback from oncology inpatient ward 1, Tampere University Hospital

According to the feedback, taking mobile photos is easy. The application directs the workflow.

A good system, truly wonderful. Really easy to use, requires very few instructions.

Feedback from oncology inpatient ward 2, Tampere University Hospital