24 Feb

An appetite for change & cheesecake

PeriNews, PeriGen's take on what matters in obstetrics
An introduction leads to some important

reminders about standardization

by Matthew Sappern, CEO

A new acquaintance recently reintroduced to me an article authored by Dr. Atul Gawande that piqued my appetite for change – and cheesecake!How healthcare standardization is like the art of making good cheesecake

In “Big Med,” published in the August 13, 2012 issue of The New Yorker Gawande touched on one of my favorite topics – standardization. His lightning bolt came while dining at The Cheesecake Factory. His guests ordered a wide variety of dishes from a seemingly endless menu – the food was uniformly presented and immensely satisfying. So, he went back in to the kitchen and learned how The Cheesecake Factory has struck an effective balance between universally applied standards and the tacit knowledge of the chefs, which I liken to “freedom at the grill.”

Today’s growing “super-regional” health systems are moving to PeriGen because they need to find ways to ensure this balance for the sake of quality care.

It is virtually impossible to ensure consistency in how individual L&D nurses across a health system will assess potentially disturbing trends; that lack of consistency will always limit the efficacy of even the most well-considered protocols. Alternatively, computer systems designed, trained and deployed to vigilantly identify specific patterns that might be of concern lends some control to the effort. The quest for continuous improvement relies on standardization for the baseline. Once potential issues are consistently identified – the clinicians can consider each case. In other words, they can achieve freedom at the grill.

27 Sep

Telemedicine Branching Out to Smallest Patients

By Matthew Sappern, CEO, PeriGen

Remote communication in obstetricsTelemedicine is getting much attention these days as innovative health systems look to increase operational efficiency and patient satisfaction. Leaders such as Stephen Klasko, MD at Thomas Jefferson University Hospital are mandating telemedicine and this top down approach will surely accelerate adoption.

Telemedicine is quickly moving beyond telestroke and the ICU. At least one major EMR company and one of the nation’s leading health systems – fortunately a PeriGen client – are investing significant resources to bring telemedicine to labor and delivery. Complexity, risk and attrition in the ranks of OBs and MFMs make labor and delivery an ideal service line in which to deploy these technologies. PeriGen’s fetal surveillance platform uses Artificial Intelligence to identify troubling patterns and long-term trends in fetal strips. This real time capability is now at the heart of a telemedicine infrastructure which allows a single OB to be alerted to specific cases – showing patterns identified as the most troubling – across an entire health system.

Telemedicine branching out to smallest patients
As a standalone tool or in concert with the above-mentioned EMR module, telemedicine creates a cost-effective way to leverage valuable clinical resources across an enterprise and help safeguard one of a health system’s most risky and most valuable service lines.

29 Jul

Trending in OB

Telehealth in labor & deliveryTelemedicine Branching Out to the Smallest Patients

Telemedicine is getting much attention these days as innovative health systems look to increase operational efficiency and patient satisfaction. Leaders such as Stephen Klasko, MD at Thomas Jefferson University Hospital are mandating telemedicine and this top down approach will surely accelerate adoption.

Telemedicine is quickly moving beyond telestroke and the ICU. At least one major EMR company and one of the nation’s leading health systems – fortunately a PeriGen client – are investing significant resources to bring telemedicine to labor and delivery. Complexity, risk and attrition in the ranks of OBs and MFMs make labor and delivery an ideal service line in which to deploy these technologies. PeriGen’s fetal surveillance platform uses Artificial Intelligence to identify troubling patterns and long-term trends in fetal strips. This real time capability is now at the heart of a telemedicine infrastructure which allows a single OB to be alerted to specific cases – showing patterns identified as the most troubling – across an entire health system.

As a standalone tool or in concert with the above-mentioned EMR module, telemedicine creates a cost-effective way to leverage valuable clinical resources across an enterprise and help safeguard one of a health system’s most risky and most valuable service lines.

I’d love to hear how your meeting the twin challenges of improving patient safety and the expected shortage of labor & delivery providers.

 

09 Jun

We Can Do Better

We Can Do Better

Recent research finds medical error third leading cause of death in USBy Matthew Sappern, CEO, PeriGen

Earlier this month, the well respected, widely read British Medical Journal published a scary study coming out of Johns Hopkins. Entitled Medical Error, the Third Leading Cause of Death in the US,  it immediately sparked debate in many corners as to the veracity of the data, the precision of the study, the complexity and limitations of actually compiling and analyzing this information. I’ll leave that to others – I see a blunt message here: We Can Do Better.

To me, this is not so much a question of enhanced training or personnel or protocols. Humans excel at critical thinking, but there will always be a “Human Factor” to manage – those few instances where a human misses something. This study begs the question “are there tools that can help clinicians at the bedside – patient by patient?” How can we best leverage technology to augment caregivers?

As you all know better than I, the clinical setting is challenging! At the labor and delivery bedside, nurses are monitoring and documenting several aspects of the labor, interacting and calming the patient, managing the patient’s family (Nurse Luisa, I apologize again for asking the same questions every five minutes 12 years ago), keeping the rest of the care team informed. All while looking for what might be faint indications of an intervention needed.

Fortunately, PeriGen customers have at their disposal some of the most advanced tools in the world to help share the load. PeriGen systems help count and calculate critical factors, providing a safety net for L&D clinicians and the world’s most precious patients. Other specialties in the hospital should take note of the great work that PeriGen users are delivering.