This Avera Medical Minute is addressing the Avera e-ICU Care... Electronic Intensive Care Units and what advantage it has for you.
Avera was the 12th Health Care Facility in the nation to use this high-tech, far reaching technology. There are now 23 different health institutes utilizing this electronic tool.
Monitors, cameras, computers and staff around the clock make up Avera McKennan Hospital and University Health Systems Electronic Intensive Care Unit. It allows an extra set of eyes to constantly monitor the vitals and medication of critically ill patients at 14 Avera Network sites in 4 states.
Dr. Edward Zawada is a Nephrologist with Avera North Central Kidney Institute and is also the Avera eICU Care Medical Director. He says, " High quality tele-video capability allow us to have a team here 24 hours a day looking in our patients when the doctor isn't there."
Avera has been ranked top in the nation of the 23 sites with this technology because more patients are surviving critical illnesses, they are getting out of ICU sooner, and out of the hospital altogether faster. 25 more patients leave the hospital every 3 months because of the Avera eICU Care than at other places.
Dr. Zawada says, "Why? More timely intervention by avoiding problems that we are seeing directly or through electronics that tracks the trends before it happens."
Avera first implemented the Avera e-ICU Care in September 2004. Since then they've cared for more than 11,000 patients, 300 of those were patients in smaller communities they could still monitor from Sioux Falls.
Zawada says it's very rewarding for the staff and for patients. "Patients have an improved sense of comfort and less anxiety because they know they are going to have extra help in managing their case," He says.
Avera also plans to add 10 more sites with electronic ICU's in the next several years totaling 24. The most sites of any health facility in the nation.
For more information call 877-at-AVERA or go to www.averamckennan.org