Critically ill patients at Mercy Medical Center Merced will soon have the benefit of the most advanced telemedicine program available in hospital intensive care units today. Through its partnership with Advanced ICU Care®, the nation's largest independent provider of tele-ICU services, patients in the intensive care unit will be monitored by highly trained intensivist physicians and critical care specialists 24 hours a day, seven days a week, providing an extra layer of care that enhances patient safety.
Mercy Merced, a member of Dignity Health System offering compassionate healthcare at more than 40 hospitals and care centers in Arizona, California and Nevada, is the first hospital in California to implement Advanced ICU Care's telemedicine program. Advanced ICU Care has worked with hospital partners across the U.S. to improve patient care and the clinical, financial and operational performance of their ICUs.
"Our partnership with Advanced ICU Care demonstrates a commitment to offering our ICU patients the best and most comprehensive care available today," said Dr. Robert Streeter, vice president of medical affairs for Mercy Merced. "With around-the-clock telemonitoring by intensivist physicians, Advanced ICU Care brings a rigorous focus on evidence-based best practices to improve patient care and safety in the ICU."
"Tele-ICUs are becoming an integral part of critical care," noted Mary Jo Gorman, M.D., M.B.A., chief executive officer for Advanced ICU Care. "Our team is excited to collaborate with the physicians and clinicians at Mercy Medical Center Merced, supporting them in providing the best possible care to their patients."
Independent studies demonstrate that this 24/7 intensivist monitoring significantly improves patient outcomes and patient safety in the intensive care unit. In a study published in the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA), implementation of a tele-ICU program was associated with reduced adjusted odds of mortality and reduced hospital length of stay, as well as with improvements in best practice adherence and lower rates of preventable complications. Another study published by the New England Healthcare Institute (NEHI) recommends that community hospitals with 10 or more ICU beds adopt tele-ICU care.
However, the current serious shortage of intensivist physicians means that many hospitals cannot provide this extensive coverage within their facilities. Advanced ICU Care makes it possible for hospitals to meet this standard by providing a solution combining 24/7 intensivist-led care, best-of-breed technology and a rigorous focus on best practices compliance.
Advanced ICU Care's team of intensivists and critical care nurses work around-the-clock complementing the care provided by the Mercy Merced's physicians. The program continuously monitors patient vital signs, medications, labs and the patient's clinical status. Proactive data management tools identify problems before they become urgent, prompting immediate intervention when necessary. In-room video is utilized during periods of evaluation or when called on by the nurse. This two-way video enables face-to face consultations between the bedside staff and the Advanced ICU Care team, ensuring that help is available when needed.
About Mercy Medical Center Merced
Mercy Medical Center is a member of Dignity Health. Dignity Health, headquartered in San Francisco, Calif., provides integrated, patient and family centered care. It is the fifth largest health system in the country with 10,000 physicians and 55,000 employees across Arizona, California, and Nevada. Through its network of more than 150 ancillary care sites and 40 acute care hospitals, Dignity Health is committed to delivering compassionate, high-quality, affordable health care services with special attention to the poor and underserved. In 2011, Dignity Health provided $1.4 billion in charity care, community benefit and unreimbursed patient care. For more information, please visit our website at www.dignityhealth.org. Dignity Health is also on Facebook and Twitter.
About Advanced ICU Care
Advanced ICU Care offers comprehensive tele-ICU programs and consulting services, with a proven track record of improving the clinical, financial and operational performance of its hospital partners. As the nation's largest independent tele-ICU provider, Advanced ICU Care has successfully implemented and managed more programs than any other organization. Our best-of-breed programs combine experienced intensivist-led care teams, sophisticated telemedicine technology and a rigorous focus on evidence-based best practices to improve patient care and safety. Our consulting team brings insights gained from decades of nationally recognized ICU leadership and expertise in both bedside ICU and tele-ICU environments. For more information, visit www.icumedicine.com.