DNV Imatis delivers a mobile ICT solution for hospitals that gives healthcare workers access to real-time information anywhere they are. “We empower the mobile hospital workforce by helping them to communicate better and ultimately provide better patient care,” says Baldur Johnsen, Vice President of International Business at DNV Imatis.
Hospitals can be a demanding environment for healthcare workers. Doctors and nurses walk 6–8 km per shift, seeing patients, communicating with staff, and fetching equipment and supplies. When they need crucial information, they must access it from a stationary location such as an office or nurse’s station, and usually their only mobile IT option is the cumbersome “COWS” (Computers on Wheels).
“Healthcare is struggling with using Information Technology that has been designed for office workers. The healthcare workforce is mobile, so clinical IT support needs to be mobile. You would think that IT suppliers to hospitals would have focused on mobility before now, but they haven’t,” explains Johnsen.
The IMATIS solution is an e-health platform that facilitates care coordination, mobile communication and task management in hospitals. The solution collects and aggregates data from hospital sensors and systems, such as electronic patient records, logistics and HR administration. Then healthcare workers can access this data in real time, regardless of their location, using apps and widgets on large touchscreens, tablets and smartphones. They can check lab results, order housekeeping and respond to emergency calls, to name just a few of the possibilities.
“Our strategy is not to replace the existing technology our customers have. We augment the systems they already have and help them to realise more benefits,” says Johnsen.
The IMATIS solution dramatically increases productivity by making hospitals a truly mobile workplace. Doctors and nurses walk less, communicate more efficiently and spend more time with their patients.
“If we can decrease the travel time in hospitals by 20 minutes per person and multiply this across all the various employees, this adds up to huge time savings. It increases the workers’ productivity and improves workforce management,” explains Johnsen.
In addition, the solution eliminates much of the hospital noise caused by round-the-clock alerts, monitors and machines. Instead, hospitals become much more serene, which creates a better healing environment for patients. Healthcare workers also benefit from a quieter, less hectic workplace.
“Our customers tell us that they are seeing less absenteeism among the staff and more satisfied patients who can rest and heal better,” says Johnsen.
Hospitals may also find that a better working environment will help to attract new, young talent.
Many countries spend 8 to 17 per cent of their GDP on healthcare, and hospitals typically account for 60 per cent of this total. As healthcare costs rise and demand increases, hospitals are seeking ways to lower their expenses while maintaining patient care. Better productivity is one way to do this.
“Technology is a solution for reducing healthcare spending,” says Johnsen. “The market potential for IMATIS is enormous. Vast sums of money are being spent on healthcare, but not many IT solutions have been able to increase productivity.”
A pioneer in mobile e-health technology, DNV Imatis has been providing ICT solutions to Norwegian hospitals for 17 years. The IMATIS solution is now installed in hospitals worldwide.