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ER Management Platform Visualizes Admission Process

By HospiMedica International staff writers
Posted on 27 May 2019
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Image: Overlaid ER software helps staff triage patients (Photo courtesy of Vital).
Image: Overlaid ER software helps staff triage patients (Photo courtesy of Vital).
New emergency room (ER) management software prioritizes patient triage, determines their likelihood of being admitted overnight, and coordinates care teams.

The Vital (Atlanta, GA, USA) Vital ER employs artificial intelligence (AI) and natural language processing to predict emergency severity index (ESI) levels hours in advance, reduce length-of-stay (LOS), and save hospitals time and money by rapidly triaging patients to the right level of care. The software, which layers on top of a hospital’s existing electronic health record (EHR) platform, predicts a patient's probability of admission based on age, chief complaint, lab results, and free-text notes. This begins the moment a patient registers, and adjusts instantly when new data is available.

Features include concentration of all ER information in one place, including pre-arrival registration, the registration process itself, a virtual track board, online patient charts, lab results, and imaging files. The platform also allows ER staff to collaborate by adding triage and custom notes, recording and sharing physician's assessments, holding secondary assessments, ordering rapid exams, and deciding treatment plans. It also includes a patient-facing app that takes down basic information and communicates wait times and updates.

ER patients that will require less attention are fast-tracked, while more intensive cases can be prepared in advance. By doing so, hospital staff can determine any bottlenecks, improve the flow of patients, and more accurately predict 30-day re-admissions in order to maximize hospital resources. During the entire process, the hospital EHR remains the system of record, and any changes made in Vital are written back into the core EHR. In addition, usage can be staged; for example, registration and triage nurses can use Vital, while doctors still use the original EHR.

“The Health Information Technology for Economic and Clinical Health [HITECH] Act was well-intentioned, but now hospitals rely on outdated, slow, and inefficient software, and nowhere is it more painful than in the emergency room,” said Aaron Patzer, CEO of Vital. “Doctors and nurses often put more time into paperwork and data entry than patient care. Vital uses smart, easy tech to reverse that, cutting wait times in half, reducing provider burnout and saving hospitals millions of dollars.”

Aaron Patzer is an internet entrepreneur and the founder of Mint.com, a financial management tool that has over 17 million registered users. Mint's primary service allows users to track bank, credit card, investment, and loan balances and transactions through a single user interface, as well as create budgets and set financial goals. In 2009, Mint was acquired by Intuit, the makers of Quicken and TurboTax.

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