Building a Smarter Hospital: The Outcomes of Effective Clinical Involvement in Designing Clinical Communication Systems

Smart hospitals optimise clinical processes, management systems and infrastructure. They’re enabled by digital infrastructure that connects staff to help them deliver better care and operational efficiencies. They look to the future – not to the past.

Chase Farm Hospital is part of The Royal Free London NHS Foundation Trust, a Global Digital Exemplar, created to implement the most forward-thinking technologies to support best patient outcomes.

This session will demonstrate how we’re transforming patient/clinical communications through multidisciplinary involvement in designing nurse call communications systems.

A dedicated clinical lead enabled us to:
• understand needs of the staff users, assess different systems, then ensure functionality works for different hospital areas.
• support transformation/change – evaluating how they work, what works for them, and where new systems could help.
The outcome: every department is different and needs flexible systems, to accommodate them. Examples include
Mobile workforce
Outpatients have highly mobile team and significant flow of patients, so need the right technology to communicate effectively to minimise clinic delays. Other specialities, like chemotherapy, have high staff/patient ratios – exemplifying the need to understand their working practices to provide the right solutions for them.
Medical device integration
By observing clinical practice, we send medical device alarms to mobile devices – ensuring patient safety while reducing noise/alarm fatigue.
Emergency calls
Our new system sends emergency pull-bell alarms directly to only designated staff’s mobile devices – minimising noise and improving patient/staff experience. We engaged with sceptical anaesthetics, concerned that critical alarms would be missed, who now trust the system.
Advanced functionality
Clinical audit tool, Perfect Ward, is only available by app and used throughout the hospital. Data can be input directly, staff see their audit results and how they compare to others
The next steps are implementing clinical workflows from patient rooms and assigning tasks to specific roles.