Patient observations get smart

Clinical staff in Gateshead are now using new smart devices to monitor patients, after the hospital introduced a state-of the-art electronic observation system.

The traditional bedside paper charts that were once a common sight in hospitals are being phased out with doctors, nurses and other health professionals using special e-devices to measure all the information taken about each patient.

The new devices – which look similar to smart phones – will help save time and provide more accurate, reliable patient records. It is hoped that better monitoring can lead to a wide range of benefits but ultimately improved care and less time in hospital for patients.

The new system, called Nervecentre, will help ensure the hospital always gets the right person, to the right place at the right time.

It can automatically monitor all of the patient’s observations electronically and ‘trigger’ a mobile message to the relevant medical professional if things are getting worse. It also allows responders to pick up messages via their mobile device with individual patient information at their fingertips.

The Trust has rolled out more than 700 of these devices across Gateshead to help support clinicians in organising and standardising the huge amount of patient information they need to monitor.

Nurse Jane Flinn explains: “This new digital system will be a real support to busy clinicians and help us make sure we provide the best possible care.

“This will really change the way we work and provide a much more accurate and detailed way of monitoring patients while they are in hospital. Having this wealth of information at your fingertips and in real time has the potential to revolutionise the way we look after the people in our care.

“The way it can track and trigger patients who may be deteriorating means we can act much faster than manually checking all the observations, which will improve safety and hopefully reduce the length of hospital stays.”