2 min read

How Simple Miscommunications Can Cost A Life

By Hannah Ostrem on Apr 18, 2018

I recently heard a story about a STEMI patient that really drove home the magnitude of healthcare's communication problem. In this case, a member of the care team had administered a medication, and in the haste of the emergency, this critical piece of information was missed by other members of the care team. Can you predict what happened next? Yep. Another clinician administered the exact same dose again moment later. Luckily, the error wasn't life threatening, but it easily could have been.

Topics: STEMI Healthcare Communication
1 min read

Inconsistencies in Processes of Care Result in Variable Survival Rates for Out-of-Hospital Cardiac Arrest. 

By James Woodson, MD on Mar 09, 2018

Recently, the AHA released recommendations that cardiac resuscitation systems of care be put in place and should involve "interconnected community, emergency medical services, and hospital efforts to measure and improve the process of care and outcome for patients with cardiac arrest."

Topics: Stroke STEMI Communication
1 min read

In-Hospital STEMI Cases Have 10x Higher Mortality Rate than Out-of-Hospital STEMIs. Here's What You Can Do About It. 

By James Woodson, MD on Feb 27, 2018

 

Topics: STEMI
1 min read

Healthcare Systems Concepts -- What is a System? Part 1 [Vlog]

By Mic Gunderson on Feb 20, 2018

EDITOR'S NOTE: The following blog post was written by guest author Mic Gunderson, President of the Center for Systems Improvement. Mic has been involved in emergency healthcare for over 40 years in leadership, managerial, and clinical positions including prior service as National Director for Clinical Systems for the American Heart Association. 

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High performing systems of care for high-risk time-sensitive conditions like cardiac arrest, major trauma, STEMI, stroke, and sepsis are critical to achieving excellent patient outcomes. To make significant improvements in these systems of care, we need to understand how systems work in general so that we can look beyond the individual hospitals and EMS agencies that make up the ‘parts’ in these systems of care.

Topics: Stroke STEMI Healthcare Communication
2 min read

Research: Can Pulsara Facilitate Communication for Multi-Organizational and Multi-Disciplinary Clinicians?

By Hannah Ostrem on Dec 13, 2017

When someone suffers a stroke or heart attack, getting the patient to definitive treatment quickly is crucial to their survival and quality of life post-event. But, getting treatment quickly requires communication between EMS, several care teams within the hospital, and sometimes even teams from other hospitals when transfer is required. 

Too often, this communication breaks down at one or many points along the way due to the outdated and non-integrated technology systems those clinicians rely on to relay their information. This antiquated technology, including phone trees, fax machines, pages, sticky notes ... (yes, really), causes critical patient information to be missed, which can contribute to treatment delays and medical errors.

To ameliorate these frustrations, researchers in Australia have conducted a preliminary study with the following aims:

"To describe:

1) If a technology-based communication solution could be implemented across multiple organizations;

and

2) Which factors are associated with clinicians’ intentions to use the technology."

Topics: Stroke STEMI Communication
3 min read

Australian Health Systems Reduce D2B and D2N Times by 28 and 33 Minutes Respectively [Preliminary Research]

By Hannah Ostrem on Dec 07, 2017

To determine if Pulsara can improve management timelines for patients suspected of having a stroke or cardiac event, researchers  in Australia have conducted a pilot study with a 6 month pre-post historical control design. 

The researchers give the following background to the study:

  • "Rapid treatment of patients with suspected acute stroke or cardiac events involves pre-hospital (paramedics) and hospital clinicians from multiple departments including: emergency, medical, neurology or cardiology, radiology or catheterisation."
  • "Clinicians repeat patient details using multiple communication methods (phone, fax, pager, face-to-face) and record details in various systems."
  • "Inefficient communication may contribute to treatment delays for these time-critical conditions."

To see if Pulsara could help stop the inefficient communication the teams were experiencing -- and thereby reduce associated treatment delays -- the researchers had prehospital clinicians as well as hospital users activate Pulsara for suspected stroke and STEMI cases.

Topics: Stroke STEMI Communication
2 min read

A Call to All Who Run Towards Mayhem

By James Woodson, MD on Sep 22, 2017

You chose this career.

Why?

Why did you go into public safety? Why did you go into healthcare? Why did you choose your specialty?

There are a number of possible reasons: Money. Prestige. Honor. Love. Fear. Anger. Hope. Adrenaline. Desire. Pressure. People.

Many of us in public safety and healthcare are just wired differently — especially those of us who deal with time sensitive emergencies. Imagine a group of people witnessing an emergency - a house fire, a car crash, a mass casualty event, a cardiac arrest, a sudden collapse, a STEMI, a stroke. If you were to watch their responses, you would see three types of people:

  1. Those who run towards the mayhem.
  2. Those who run away.
  3. Those who stand still and watch.
Topics: Stroke STEMI EMS Trauma Communication
4 min read

Patient-Centric Healthcare is a Failed Philosophy.

By James Woodson, MD on Sep 14, 2017

Is your job in healthcare to focus on and serve only the patient or is it also to serve others on the TEAM who are caring for the patient?

Patient centric healthcare as we currently practice it is a failed philosophy. We focus on serving the patient for a finite moment in time even though the patient's journey extends well beyond our specific tasks.

In this mindset, we have a system where we — yes, you and I — cause 400,000 deaths per year and 10,000 serious medical complications every day, costing the U.S. an estimated one trillion dollars a year. Additionally, 80% of these errors occur secondary to miscommunication during transitions of care.

Patient centric healthcare is not enough.  We need to realize that just serving the patient is not enough — we ALSO need to serve the fellow clinicians who are serving the patient. We need patient- and people-centric healthcare.

Topics: Stroke STEMI EMS Communication
4 min read

PeaceHealth Southwest MC Sets New Precedent in Critical Care

By Team Pulsara on Sep 12, 2017

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

PeaceHealth Southwest Medical Center is the first hospital on the west coast to use the healthcare communication platform, Pulsara, and the first in the nation to use the company's Prehospital Alerting Package.

BOZEMAN, MT -- SEPTEMBER 12, 2017 -- Stroke is a leading cause of disability and death in the U.S., with close to 800,000 cases each year. The outcome can be devastating, and every delay in care impacts a stroke survivor’s chance at a full recovery. To minimize those delays and make emergency communication more efficient, PeaceHealth Southwest Medical Center in Vancouver, Washington, has partnered with several local EMS services to begin using the healthcare communication platform, Pulsara.

PeaceHealth Southwest is the first hospital on the west coast to use Pulsara for STEMI and stroke communications both with EMS and within the hospital, and the first in the nation to use the company's Prehospital Alerting Package for all EMS-transferred patients.

Topics: Stroke STEMI EMS Press