Wireless sensors and continuous vital sign monitoring

Recent advances in the Internet of medical things (IoMT) off er clinical staff the opportunity to replace periodic measurement of vital signs, e.g., heart rate, respiratory rate with continuous monitoring technologies. Examples include wearable devices such as watches and patches, as well as touchless sensors. In all instances, the technologies transmit data wirelessly to a central location and feed into predictive models designed to proactively identify patients who are at increased clinical risk.

Leveraging interdisciplinary teams, IoMT sensors will initially be deployed on several medical/surgical inpatient units at four Northwell Health hospitals. Initial phases of the project will focus on validating new technologies for accuracy and in collaboration with clinical teams establishing workflows consistent with current staffing models. Future phases will include developing algorithms for risk stratification and building effective tools, such as mobile apps, for generating predictive alerts to nurses and physicians.

The OR Black Box®

To advance quality outcomes for both patients and clinical staff, Northwell Health has started using black box technology in its operating rooms (ORs) — the first US health system to do so. The initiative is currently being piloted by laparoscopic urologic and colon surgical teams at Long Island Jewish (LIJ) Medical Center in two dedicated ORs that were fitted with equipment to record information during surgeries.

Much like flight data recorders used in aviation, the OR Black Box captures video and audio of the operative procedure, along with physiological data from the patient and the anesthesia monitor. It enables surgical teams to proactively learn, minimize risk and improve care. Northwell Health is currently preparing to expand the technology to additional ORs within the organization.

OR Black Box technology was created by the Canada-based firm Surgical Safety Technologies in 2014. Surgeons there and in Europe have been using black boxes for the past five years.

LabFly: Expanding access to laboratory services

A first-of-its-kind service developed by Northwell Health Labs, LabFly is the latest innovation to expand testing to more people and more communities throughout the New York metro area.

This new mobile app allows patients to schedule a blood draw at home or at work at a time that fits their schedule. It offers patients a convenient and private alternative to having their blood taken at a physician’s office or a traditional patient service center.

Users enter their demographic and insurance information, upload their prescription and schedule an appointment. Patients can securely access their lab test results on the app approximately four days after the blood draw. Caregivers can also schedule a blood draw for someone they are caring for.

The future electronic health record (EHR): For clinicians, by clinicians

Northwell Health and Allscripts, a leader in health care information technology solutions, have undertaken a joint development effort to build a cutting-edge outpatient Electronic Health Record (EHR). Designed by clinicians, the new EHR will be efficient and streamlined while addressing realities of delivering care in a complex integrated delivery network.

Northwell Health physicians and other professionals from across various departments will engage in focus group sessions and in-depth surveys to examine current issues with EHRs, as well as create ideas that can lead to improvements and solutions. Advanced technology such as voice recognition and artificial intelligence/machine learning will be incorporated into the future EHR to improve clinician experience and patient care.

The Northwell Health Usability Lab will be a key strategic partner in this endeavor, providing expertise in system usability evaluation during all phases of software development and stages of usability testing. This will assure that the vision and requirements gathered will translate into a product that truly supports clinicians and delivery of the highest quality of care as a product “for clinicians by clinicians.”