7 min read

Canadian Physicians Call for Telehealth Infrastructure and Training

By Kinsie Clarkson on Oct 26, 2020

As lawmakers and physicians debate what to do about telehealth restrictions in the wake of COVID-19, a growing number of clinicians would like to see telehealth become a more regular part of patient care.

The motion to make telehealth permanent after the pandemic seems to be gaining momentum, both in Canada and the United States. Canadian physicians and researchers seem to agree that while it won’t solve everything, telehealth has the potential to help remedy a lot of problems in healthcare across the provinces.

Topics: Communication Telemedicine COVID-19 Telehealth Canada
3 min read

An Easier Way to Coordinate Care—No Matter Where You Are

By Josh Jordan on Oct 23, 2020

Have you ever had to coordinate care for a really sick patient that needed an immediate transfer or consult, and had to divert your attention away from the patient in order to get in touch with all the necessary team members? Have you ever been frustrated by just how much time and runaround it takes to get everyone on the same page? 

Physical distance is part of the package when you’re trying to coordinate care for patients. Whether you’re down the hallway or miles apart, getting the right information to the right people at the right time can be a challenge. That’s why having clear, established lines of communication is vital to successfully coordinating patient care.

Topics: Communication Time Sensitive Emergencies Connected Teams Interoperability
4 min read

TRAUMA: Radio Report (A One-Act Play by Jessie Senini)

By Jessie Senini on Oct 16, 2020

TRAUMA: Radio Report

A One-Act Play by Jessie Senini

Unit 3245 has responded to a motorcycle accident with two injured persons in the dead of night on a suburban road. Patient One is unresponsive, while Patient Two is alert but with severe injuries. Both are critical. With the update information from the bystander, dispatch is also calling out a second unit for the other patient, and fire is already responding to the scene. The location does not meet criteria for a helicopter (the ground units will be faster) and everyone is lights and sirens to get there.

Topics: EMS Communication Acnkowledge
3 min read

Three Keys to Silent Leadership

By Asbel Montes on Oct 14, 2020

Special thanks to our guest author, Asbel Montes, for contributing today's blog. Asbel is the Senior Vice President of Strategic Initiatives at Acadian Ambulance Service. You can read more about him in his bio below.

One of the most important aspects in leadership is being able to recognize the power of your words. Just as important, however, is the ability to recognize the power of your silence. 

Topics: EMS Leadership Communication
2 min read

Australia’s Latrobe Regional Hospital Improves Door-to-CT Times by 68% with Pulsara (Case Study)

By Kinsie Clarkson on Sep 28, 2020

For Latrobe Regional Hospital (LRH) near Melbourne, Australia, streamlining communication has been a major area of focus, both to improve patient care and to strengthen collaboration across its healthcare system. Up until the beginning of 2020, they used a combination of phone calls and pagers to interface among Emergency Services, ED, and hospital staff—resulting in inefficiencies and challenging communication for caregivers.

Topics: Stroke Press Communication Connected Teams COVID-19 Telehealth Client Success Australia
1 min read

St. Bernards Medical Center Improves STEMI Care Coordination (Case Study)

By Kinsie Clarkson on Sep 09, 2020

With state-of-the-art facilities and well-trained caregivers, St. Bernards’ cardiac teams were already achieving door-to-balloon (DTB) times well within the recommended guidelines for STEMI response. But that didn’t stop them from looking for ways to get even better.

“We have a lean process for STEMI response, but we needed a way to see the bigger picture for identifying areas we could improve,” said Lindsey Stacy, the hospital’s STEMI coordinator.

Topics: STEMI Press Communication Connected Teams Systems of Care Client Success
10 min read

The State of the Profession [2020 EMS Trend Report Part 1]

By Team Pulsara on Aug 19, 2020

EDITOR'S NOTE: Last month, EMS1, Fitch & Associates, and the National EMS Management Association released their third annual EMS Trend Report, proudly sponsored by Pulsara. Because the articles and advice found within contain such critical subject matter, we've elected to publish each segment one at a time here on our blog. Read, enjoy, share, and take to heart the following information brought to you by the most prestigious thought leaders in EMS.

About the authors: Jay Fitch, PhD, is a founding partner of Fitch & Associates and is internationally recognized for leadership as a consultant, educator and innovator in EMS and public safety.

Anthony Minge, EdD, is a senior partner at Fitch & Associates. Prior to joining the firm, he was the business manager for Northwest MedStar in Spokane, Washington.


TECHNOLOGY ADOPTION, PROVIDER RESILIENCY AND PREPAREDNESS: INTERPRETING THE EMS TREND REPORT 2020

EMS leaders anticipated a linear progression in 2020 – managing a slight increase in call volume and reimbursement, while trying to become more efficient and otherwise hold down costs. COVID-19 certainly changed the definition of normal, and perhaps how EMS will evolve in the future.

The EMS Trend Report asks a number of questions each year to ascertain industry perception of a wide variety of key issues and related trends, from measures used to track cardiac arrests, to clinical interventions, ePCR satisfaction, use of lights and sirens for 911 responses, budget changes, and the degree to which agencies are prepared for disruptive events.

Topics: EMS Communication ePCRs Community Paramedicine Mobile Integrated Health COVID-19
2 min read

Better Stroke Care for NY Mount St. Mary's Hospital

By Team Pulsara on Aug 14, 2020

New York Hospital Improves Communication and Door-to-Needle Times with Pulsara

Just before the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, care teams at Mount St. Mary’s Hospital in Lewiston, New York realized that they needed a better way to communicate. According to an article published recently in a local Lewiston news source, Mount St. Mary’s chose to adopt Pulsara in order to open better lines of communication between EMS and emergency department staff.

Pulsara is a mobile-first telehealth and communication platform that connects teams across organizations. Through the use of mobile technology, Pulsara allows every member of the care team —from medics to nurses to physicians — to communicate on one dedicated channel for each patient. And for stroke patients at Mount St. Mary’s Regional Stroke Center, more efficient care team communication can have a major impact.

Topics: Stroke Communication Telemedicine Technology Connected Teams Interoperability Client Success
6 min read

Finding a Next-Generation Telehealth Plan of Action for Your Hospital [Part 2]

By Tim Hakamaki on Aug 03, 2020

This is part 2 of our 5-part blog series based on the webinar “The Next-Gen Communication and Telehealth Plan of Action for Your Hospital.” Check out part 1 here. Watch the corresponding section of the webinar below, or listen to the full webinar here. 

Over the last four months, COVID-19 has forever changed the landscape of healthcare. Telehealth has experienced explosive growth since March, creating groundbreaking changes in telemedicine regulations and reimbursement opportunities. Prior to four months ago, only a small minority of systems utilized telehealth in beyond three to five percent of their appointments. Since the start of COVID-19, telehealth has grown to millions of claims in less than a few months. According to a published stat, the number of Medicare beneficiaries using telehealth services during the pandemic increased 11,700%. 

Looking at a graph of telehealth’s "hockey stick" growth is astonishing. For many years, there was no substantial change. March 2020 marks the shift between the blue and red growth markers. Telehealth shot from near non-existence to millions of claims practically overnight. 

Topics: Communication Telemedicine COVID-19 Telehealth Reimbursement
7 min read

How Austin-Travis County Uses Pulsara to Manage the COVID Crisis & Beyond

By Kinsie Clarkson on Jul 29, 2020

As EMS agencies all over the country have struggled to handle COVID-19, many are searching for answers. How do we prepare for possible future waves of COVID-19? Outdated technology cannot keep up with the variety of new challenges. Is there a way to streamline communication and use mobile technology to solve problems and still deliver high-quality patient care? Could such a solution be flexible and scalable, able to handle any situation—even a pandemic?

When COVID-19 hit, Austin-Travis County EMS, serving the Austin, Texas area, had the tools at their disposal to build an efficient system to help mitigate the crisis. They embraced mobile technology in an effort to improve communication, minimize the risk of exposure to healthcare providers, and continue to provide patients with the smartest and most effective quality of care.

Topics: EMS Communication Connected Teams Community Paramedicine COVID-19 Client Success
5 min read

Finding a Next-Generation Telehealth Plan of Action for Your Hospital [Part 1]

By James Woodson, MD on Jul 24, 2020

This 5-part blog series is based on the webinar “The Next-Gen Communication and Telehealth Plan of Action for Your Hospital.” Watch the corresponding section of the webinar below, or listen to the full webinar here. 

Telehealth and telemedicine have gone through dramatic changes over the last four months, far more than many of us dreamed possible. Regulations and reimbursement are evolving rapidly, which has opened up the door to many new opportunities for using telehealth. Telehealth is helping us improve both the quality and the value of the care that we deliver to our communities. 

However, all this change will almost certainly have wide-reaching implications for your health system, especially in the acute care space. Over the next five posts in this series, we’ll discuss the rapidly shifting landscapes of telehealth regulations and reimbursement and how you can navigate them. We’ll also dive into some of the questions surrounding how to best leverage telehealth in the acute care space.

Topics: Communication Telemedicine COVID-19 Telehealth Reimbursement
2 min read

How Telemedicine Can Help in Rural Healthcare

By Wes Wood on Jul 22, 2020

I grew up and lived most of my life in a very rural area. The majority of my EMS and ED nursing experience comes from rural settings, including a few years in a small critical access hospital. I was the only nurse in the 5-bed ER on night shift. We even locked all the doors to the hospital, and if someone presented to the ER for care, they had to ring a doorbell so I could let them in. No really—we did.

My, how times have changed with technology and medical advances. The recent COVID-19 crisis has affected virtually every healthcare professional in some form or fashion, and has potentially changed healthcare forever. Telemedicine has emerged to the forefront as a valuable option for providing care: both acute and chronic, in person, and remote. It’s gone from being a distant future option hidden behind miles of red tape to being one of the hottest topics in healthcare today.

Topics: Communication Telemedicine Technology Telehealth
4 min read

Upcoming Webinar: Sharing Information & Data During a Pandemic

By Nathan Williams on Jul 13, 2020

COVID-19 continues to tax finite public safety resources, underscoring the need for efficient and effective information sharing tools. Since it appears as if the pandemic will be challenging us for the foreseeable future, take 60 minutes to explore how four FirstNet-approved apps and services (10-21 Police Phone, Pulsara, Rave PANIC Button, and Allerio) help agencies share critical information and engage with the community during these difficult times. 

When: Thursday, July 16, 2020 | 12:00 pm ET / 10:00 am MT / 11:00 am CT / 9:00 am PT

How: SIGN UP HERE 

Keep reading to learn more!

Topics: Communication Technology Innovation
4 min read

Embracing Rapid Change in Medicine

By Greg Brown on Jul 10, 2020

It is obvious to those in our industry that healthcare is preparing for a seismic shift in the way we deliver, access, and treat our patients. Unfortunately, it took a global viral emergency for that to happen. 

Periods of great stress can be a catalyst for periods of fantastic innovation. Just like a lump of coal, the tremendous pressure that healthcare has faced during COVID-19 will transform our delivery model into a diamond. Traditional pipeline methods of care delivery, communication, and treatment will undergo rapid changes and iterations of process improvement. With this incoming wave of change, it’s time to let our hair down a bit. I urge all clinicians not to limit yourself on what you think can and cannot be done. 

Topics: Communication Technology Innovation
2 min read

Risk Is Not Binary: Thoughts on the End of the Beginning of COVID-19

By James Woodson, MD on Jul 08, 2020

I recently read an article that interviewed doctors from San Francisco who volunteered to work on the front lines of the pandemic in New York. They warn that while many states are reopening and life seems in some ways to be returning to normal, it can be easy to forget that COVID-19 is still spreading and still deadly. Pandemic fatigue is setting in, but the fight is far from over. 

Topics: Communication COVID-19 Preparedness
2 min read

Longview Regional Medical Center Achieves Record STEMI Treatment Times (Case Study)

By Kinsie Clarkson on Jun 12, 2020

Longview Regional Medical Center (LRMC) has long had a well-designed and fully functioning process for identifying and rapidly treating STEMI patients. The hospital was meeting its goal of keeping door-to-reperfusion times under 60 minutes; as a result, patient outcomes were generally very good. Despite their satisfactory performance, the teams at LRMC believed they could reduce their treatment times even further to improve patient outcomes.

Topics: STEMI Press Communication Connected Teams Systems of Care Client Success
2 min read

Lessons in Care Coordination from a Kitchen Remodel

By Brittney Nelson, BSN, RN, SCRN on Jun 10, 2020

Right before shelter-in-place struck, my husband and I started remodeling our kitchen. It’s a relatively small kitchen, and we have done the majority of the work ourselves. Because of this, the number of people needed to complete the job was significantly smaller than if we had hired a contractor.

However, over the last few months I have grown increasingly frustrated by trying to coordinate communication between the small number of individuals required to finish the job! Between window installers, countertop installers, and tile installers, I have been making tons of phone calls trying to keep the ball rolling and ensuring everyone is lined up appropriately. It’s a lot of work keeping track of everyone, and it takes up a ton of time just to make sure everything will run like it’s supposed to.

You may be wondering how this relates to time-sensitive emergencies. Kitchen remodels are the polar opposite of time-sensitive emergencies in most ways — after all, they’re not at all life threatening or serious. But as I began to realize, they can be equally as frustrating in the coordination and communication department.

Topics: Communication Technology Connected Teams
3 min read

Should EMS Know the Addresses of COVID-19 Patients?

By Kinsie Clarkson on May 11, 2020

Privacy, Safety, and How Telehealth Technology Could Be the Answer

COVID-19 causes tension between pandemic mitigation measures and patient privacy

One of the most pressing questions to come out of the COVID-19 pandemic is the issue of patient privacy. The latest of many questions about patient privacy involves who has the right to know who has the virus, and when—specifically, EMS and first responders.

A few weeks ago, NPR reported on what’s becoming a national debate: whether or not first responders should be told when a call that is not about a potential case of COVID-19 occurs in a home that has one.

Topics: EMS Communication COVID-19
3 min read

Communication: Critical to Patient Safety and Improved Outcomes

By Alyssa Wickham on Mar 25, 2020

Pulsara partnered with the Center for Patient Safety to discuss how to improve communication during time-sensitive emergencies at EMS Today 2020

When it comes to ensuring patient safety and positive outcomes in emergency care, one factor almost always plays a role: communication. At EMS Today in Tampa Bay, Florida, Kris Kaull, Pulsara’s Chief Marketing Officer, joined Brian LaCroix, EMS coordinator for the Center for Patient Safety and President of the National EMS Management Association, to discuss how communication plays a vital role and what causes communication breakdowns in healthcare settings.

Topics: EMS Communication
1 min read

Arkansas Healthcare System Uses New Communication Approach to Improve STEMI Patient Outcomes [Case Study]

By Hannah Ostrem on Mar 06, 2020

Saint Mary’s Regional Health System is a Joint-Commission-accredited Level III Trauma Center, located in Russellville, Arkansas. The 170-bed hospital has delivered care to the River Valley community for the past 90 years, and alongside Pope County EMS since 1967.

Saint Mary’s and Pope County EMS have a long-standing relationship built on a shared value of putting patients first. As the only hospital and EMS agency serving their region, they together perform emergency response for 28,000 patients annually.

Topics: STEMI EMS Communication Connected Teams Systems of Care