Digital tech pilot helps NHS Trusts keep track of beds

Several NHS providers are piloting new Fitbit-style technology to track beds, staff, patients and assets, giving Trusts real-time information on bed status, patient pathway tracking and asset management, and ultimately, increasing bed capacity.

This group of Trusts have become Patient Flow Software Implementation Pilots, deploying TeleTracking Technologies’ real-time technology to provide a real-time view on bed status, which patients need beds, where hospital assets and equipment are located, and the nearest staff – be it nursing, portering, housekeeping.

The first of these pilots (Royal Wolverhampton NHS Trust) has already seen a number of substantial benefits including:

  • 60% reduction in day surgical cancellations due to lack of beds
  • 35% reduction in breaches of the four hour A&E treat, admit or discharge due to lack of beds, despite a 10% increase in attendances
  • 11% reduction in patients’ medical length of stay
  • 30% reduction in the total number of bed days occupied by ‘medical outliers’ – these being patients admitted to hospital for a medical condition but placed in a surgical ward for capacity reasons.

The Countess of Chester NHS Foundation Trust, University College Hospitals London NHS Foundation Trust, and the Mid and South Essex Regime have been selected by NHS Improvement and are at various early stages of deployment of the new technology.

Adam Sewell-Jones, director of improvement at NHS Improvement said: “A key part of NHS Improvement’s role is to support NHS trusts in developing new ways of working to improve patient care and meet rising demand. TeleTracking is one example of that ambition. This new technology enables staff to see real time data on beds available within the hospital, enabling patients to be allocated to the most appropriate ward first time, ensuring they receive care from a medical and nursing team who are experts in their particular condition. If the NHS is to meet rising demand it must continue to innovate and develop new technologies that enhance and improve patient care.”

 



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