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SYS-CON MEDIA Authors: Liz McMillan, Pat Romanski, Elizabeth White, Wade Williamson, Lori MacVittie

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Connecticut Hospital Strengthens Workflow and Satisfaction Using Responder® ‘Direct Connect’ Technology

New technology at Saint Francis Hospital and Medical Center is delivering on a critical need to establish improved and instantaneous communications for both staff and patient satisfaction.

The new technology uses Rauland Responder’s ‘Direct Connect’ to link the Hospital’s nurse call system with staff’s Cisco mobile devices, allowing nursing to communicate with patients and with each other more effectively and instantaneously.

According to Saint Francis, the new system is delivering reliable and improved connectivity to mobile devices, as well as comprehensive reporting on staff and patient call activity. The Hospital requires technologies that offer an open architecture and the ability to grow with expansions in phased upgrades.

“Before using Rauland’s Direct Connect integration, we attempted to use middleware to connect the phones and nurse call,” said Angela Cotton, Clinical Budget Manager at Saint Francis. “That encountered problems from day one, leaving the floors with delayed calls.”

Additionally, the initial installation gave only limited nurse call reporting details, lacking a definition of patient call patterns, call history and staff behaviors needed for effective decision making.

Responder Direct Connect

With a long history using Rauland Responder nurse call, Saint Francis looked to Rauland’s local distributor, TPC Systems, for a solution. The Hospital found that Responder’s Direct Connect technology could easily integrate Cisco mobile phones with the nurse call to quickly improve communication with patients, streamline workflows, and deliver not only better reporting but quieter patient care units. Using the Responder integration, Saint Francis can now see for the first time detailed data on staff workflow, patient calls and patterns for workloads and staff response times.

“Using Direct Connect and Responder’s Reports Manager, we can analyze patient call and nurse response patterns and productivity in an entirely new way,” noted Cotton. “It’s amazing how much quieter the floors are following this integration.”

Responder Staff Terminals

Additionally, Saint Francis placed Responder staff terminals in rooms and departments as part of the nurse call/phone integration. Tailored to each patient care unit based on environment and workflow, the staff terminals further improve communication, productivity and satisfaction. The touchscreens with one-touch alerting are expandable and bring the ability to affect clinical nursing workflow beyond simple signaling devices.

“By using the Responder staff terminals to communicate, we can save 5, 10, 15 minutes of doctor and staff time, and there’s no more need to go locate staff or find them by phone or pager,” said Katherine Stanton, Clinical Informatics Database Analyst. “It’s extremely important in helping us boost workflow and productivity with better communication.”

Staff, Patient Satisfaction

“Our patients love that they can instantly talk from their bed with a nurse no matter where the nurse is located,” added Krystyna Demusz, Nursing Manager. “They’re reassured by the ability to reach their caregiver with no delay. Patient satisfaction has improved, and the units are much quieter.”

About Saint Francis Care: Saint Francis Care is an integrated healthcare delivery system established by Saint Francis Hospital and Medical Center, an anchor institution in north central Connecticut since 1897. Licensed for 617 beds and 65 bassinets, it is a major teaching hospital and the largest Catholic hospital in New England. Other major entities of Saint Francis Care include The Mount Sinai Rehabilitation Hospital, the Connecticut Joint Replacement Institute, the Hoffman Heart and Vascular Institute of Connecticut, the Saint Francis/Mount Sinai Regional Cancer Center, the Joyce D. and Andrew J. Mandell Center for Comprehensive Multiple Sclerosis Care and Neuroscience Research, and Saint Francis HealthCare Partners. Johnson Memorial Medical Center, parent organization of Johnson Memorial Hospital, Evergreen Health Care Center, and Home and Community Health Services is also a Saint Francis Care Partner. Its services are supported by a network of five major Access Centers and eight additional medical office centers sited throughout the region. For more information, visit www.stfranciscare.com.

About Rauland Responder

Rauland-Borg is a respected global leader in the design and delivery of advanced communications, workflow and life-safety solutions for hospitals worldwide, with installations in more than 4,000 acute care hospitals in 40 countries. For more information, visit www.rauland.com.

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