LAKE CHARLES, LA (KPLC) - Patient safety is paramount in hospital settings and traditionally, it has taken one-to-one care 24 hours a day for some of the most at-risk patients.
That can tie up skilled nursing staff from other demands and that is why a new video monitoring system has been launched at Lake Charles Memorial Hospital.
It is called the AvaSys Telesitter Solution and through a two-way audio system, video camera, and central monitoring station, Memorial nurse manager, Tressy Bergeron, is able to keep an eye and ear on up to 12 patients at one time.
"It's pretty simple," she said. "We have these mobile cameras we can put in a patient's room. We just plug it in, it works from the WIFI, and it sends a signal over here to the office."
At Memorial, Safety Telesitter was launched in June on the critical care unit, monitoring the patients most at risk of falling or hurting themselves while staying in the hospital.
"We have not had a fall or injury since we started on the patients we're monitoring," said Bergeron.
These patients are the ones who would have needed one-on-one care, 24-7 in their rooms to stay safe. Telesitter still allows that monitoring, remotely, with a trained telesitter constantly keeping an eye on patients.
"If we see a patient struggling, trying to get out of bed, pulling at tubes and lines, anything that can cause harm, we can verbally redirect that patient," said Bergeron. "If that verbal redirection does not work, we can call the nurse."
Each of the rooms that has the Telesitter system in use has a flag on the door to let the staff know exactly where to go in the event of a stat alarm.
"If it is more of an emergent thing, where the patient is going to get out of bed and you need to stop them, we have a stat alarm that we can push," said Bergeron. "It sends what we call a critical alarm that can be heard throughout the nursing unit."
An immediate line of defense for patients most at risk and keeping skilled nursing staff where it is most needed.
The cameras do not record video and if privacy is needed, a privacy screen can temporarily disable the video.
If the patient does not understand English, the system can issue pre-recorded simple commands in as many as 250 languages.
The Telesitter system is optional for patients. If refused, a one-to-one sitter would be provided.