The transformation in healthcare in recent times especially as seen in the establishment of new therapeutic devices is a crucial indicator demonstrating the power of technology. The improved art of healthcare delivery has significantly improved workplace efficiency most importantly in medical error prevention, omission, and waste management in health care centers (Vaccaro, 2017). All the success can be ascribed to the novel informatics as well as the engineering system strategies that provide excellent opportunities to enhance acute care delivery designs (Karlsen, Ølnes & Heyn, 2018). The focus of this paper is on Intelligent Hospital Pavilion ICU, one of the medical health care techniques which have embraced and integrated technology in care provided to patients in the ICU unit. The paper will critically analyze the various elements and relation to patient care and safety. Smart hospital environments have facilitated consistent delivery of efficient, affordable and error-free patient-oriented healthcare(Karlsen, Ølnes & Heyn, 2018).
According to Dr. Neil Halpern, the three most essential things in the hospital, especially in an ICU unit are the healing environment, patient safety and care for patient information(Intelligent Hospital,2014). Regarding the healing environment, Halpern first emphasizes that a proper environment should ensure patient privacy and he demonstrates this by showing the three ways in which privacy can be attained his unit. This includes the use of curtains, use of double pane glass windows with blinds and lastly electronic glass (E-glass)(Halpern,2014). The doctor claims that curtains are ineffective as they are prone to dirt and praises the e-glass simply because it is quite reliable.
Regarding patient information, Halpern notes that tracking of the specimen is the most difficult and important thing in his unit. To achieve this, the section has installed some superior equipment; for instance, the pneumatic tubes all of them linked to digest and deliver information about a specific patient as one. He also demonstrates that inter-hospital specimen transfer is closely monitored by this specialized machine to ensure data information authenticity and credibility(Halpern,2014). The device is password protected, and it indicates the recipient with an option to cancel the transfer in case the recipient is not the one intended. Additionally, the machine can initiate an immediate sample transfer to enhance security(Halpern,2014). The composition of these engineering systems is what the doctor refers to as the high-tech healthcare informatics platform.
The doctor highlights the use of new technologies for patient examination. Under this, he mainly focuses on the use of a bedside sound gram machine instead of the traditional stethoscope. This equipment is excellent in patient examination as it displays the visual of the patient’s internal organs such as the heart and the lungs in real time thusproviding the doctor with the insight of the patient’s conditions regarding real-time care of the patient in the ICU(Halpern,2014).
Finally, Halpern talks about patient safety and under this he introduces a special system known as the infusion pump platform. This equipment plays a critical role in patient care in the ICU. First, the apparatus can be pre-programmed to accept a precise dose to be administered to the patient(Halpern,2014). In case the nurse errs by either giving too low or too high of a dose, the machine blocks the tubing systems preventing the administration of that medication(Halpern,2014; Karlsen, Ølnes & Heyn, (2018). Secondly, the apparatus can accept, handling and thus reducing the potential errors that can occur during prescription.
From the above descriptions, it is evident that this healthcare facility has successfully adopted the use of technology in healthcare provision for patients in ICU. First and foremost, I support the methods the unit has employed to achieve patient privacy as this increases doctor-patient confidentiality consequently improving communication between the two parties. As the doctor indicates, curtains are not as effective as they become dirty quickly. The use of e-glasses is excellent as it is fast and easy to implement as one needs to press a button only to create the preferred atmosphere. However, the doctor did not mention anything in case of power failure or mechanical failure of the e-glass system. He did not provide a back-up method to implement to ensure privacy in such cases. Secondly, I am in support for the use of bedside sonogram machine in patient examination and not the traditional stethoscope because the device is visual, and those can display the real-time movement of the patients’ internal organs increasing the precision in medication unlike the traditional stethoscope which depends upon the listening power of the doctor(Halpern,2014).
Lastly, the use of the infusion pump platform is an excellent improvement in the ICU unit. However, I think the infusion machine could pose a risk to not only the patients but also the nurses. First, in case the device is wrongly pre-programmed, say for instance there is an error in the program such that the machine accepts and administers too low or too high of a dose. In such cases, it will be difficult for the nurses to detect the mistake and this could worsen the condition of the patient and may even lead to death(Karlsen, Ølnes & Heyn, (2018). Additionally, the doctor did not indicate what measures are taken in cases where the machine makes a wrong medication with an accurate measure, not too low or too high. In case the device administers, a wrong prescription, instant deaths may result, and this could be unnecessaryloss of human life. Finally, the doctor claims that the infusion pump platform can take full medication prescriptions. I think this is a significant threat to the nurses because the excessive dependence on this machine will lead to loss of some of the essential skills in the field of medicine (Kienle, 2019). In case the device fails, the nurses may find it difficult to work on their own, and this may put the lives of patients at risk(Karlsen, Ølnes & Heyn, (2018).
The ICU rooms have the duty to take care of critically ill patients. This has, as shown above, led to a need in close observation and monitoring prompting the use of highly specialized machines. The physical environments in such sections could be frightening not only to patients but also to family and relatives. Therefore it is vital for hospitals to adequately consider their implementations to ensure patient safety, staff efficiency and promote quality of care. The Intelligent Hospital Pavilion ICU is one such center which has put effort towards a smarter ICU environment.
Halpern, N., Dr. (2014, April 29). The ICU at the 2014 Intelligent Hospital™ Pavilion. Retrieved from https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=V42yuH4xmyQ
Kienle, P. C. (2019). Unforeseen Dangers. Journal of Infusion Nursing,42(1), 44-48. doi:10.1097/nan.0000000000000309
Vaccaro, S. (2017). Practitioner Application. Journal of Healthcare Management,62(3), 195-196. doi:10.1097/jhm-d-17-00043
Karlsen, M. W., Ølnes, M. A., & Heyn, L. G. (2018). Communication with patients in intensive care units: A scoping review. Nursing in Critical Care. doi:10.1111/nicc.12377
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