Avera Medical Minute: Wi-Fi Telemetry System - KSFY News - Sioux Falls, SD News, Weather, Sports

Avera Medical Minute: Wi-Fi Telemetry System

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Avera Heart Hospital patient Wes Wilkins walking with his RN Katelyn Carlson. Avera Heart Hospital patient Wes Wilkins walking with his RN Katelyn Carlson.

Telemetry is nothing new. It's a wireless way hospital staff can monitor patients.  But there is something new with it at the Avera Heart Hospital of South Dakota. They have a new system that allows patients to be monitored from anywhere in the hospital.

Wesley Wilkins is getting ready to be discharged from the Avera Heart Hospital in Sioux Falls and head home to Platte. A week and a half ago he had part of his left lung removed. Although it's been a long week and a half of recovery, Wes and his wife Dottie, are grateful that while he's recuperating all of his vital signs can we monitored and watched no matter where they are in the hospital thanks to the hospital's new Dragar Wi-Fi telemetry system.

Jim Hitchcock, a Bio-Med Technician at the Avera Heart Hospital says, "It uses the existing hospital Wi-Fi network, so instead of the using 2 or 3 individual networks, we use 1 wireless network. That handles all the monitoring, handles the hospital information so the staff can use laptops anywhere in the hospital and the patient and their families can connect to the Internet and spend time doing that instead of just laying in a hospital bed."

With the new telemetry system the RN can see the oxygen levels on the screen. It's like a mini computer. The old system had no screen on it. Seeing the oxygen level is important for patients like Wes because it's usually the first indication that something is wrong if the level drops.

Avera Heart Hospital Registered Nurse Katelyn Carlson says, "When they used to be on their portable monitor we'd have to be push a button to get it up to the monitor screen in their room or we'd have to run out to the desk to watch the rhythm. Now it's on the box, so yes it's very immediate."

This monitoring upgrade benefits the patient no matter how you look at it. Wes can take a lap around his floor knowing his heart rate is constantly being checked and his RN Katelyn Carlson can respond faster to any problems that arise. A win-win for Wes!

The Avera Heart Hospital is the first in the world to implement this new Wi-Fi telemetry system.


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