Introduction: For patients undergoing surgery, a standard care scenario requires that their surgeon review them post-operatively to check their progress. This is usually done by the specialist in person before they may be discharged. However, in Australia given that most specialists work at multiple institutions; reviewing ward rounds can be delayed for numerous reasons, which in turn delays management decisions and discharge and may lead to lower patient satisfaction among other problems.
Aim: to establish
1. Proof of concept of video conferencing capabilities as an adjunct for post-operative inpatient review. 2. If using video conferencing as an adjunct for post-operative inpatient review will provide improved patient, staff and surgeon satisfaction, more efficient/effective discharge including 70% of patients discharged by 10 AM, and will provide cost savings.
Methods: A mixed method clinical trial with 200 patients is being conducted at Epworth to demonstrate proof of concept of the electronic discharge/video conferencing solution. A two arm non-blinded study design is adopted. 100 patients are in the control arm, which utilizes standard care approaches to discharge while 100 patients are in the intervention arm which utilizes the electronic discharge solution. Clinicians include urologists and nurses who administer their normal duties regarding discharge to both arms of the study. The only difference being that the intervention arm utilizes discharge with the electronic discharge/video conferencing solution.
Conclusions: Initial directional data has highlighted the merits of this approach. There is still some tweaking to be done regarding optimizing sound and video with the videoconferencing tool. A task-technology fit viability lens is used to highlight the strengths of this solution.
Professor Nilmini Wickramasinghe(PhD, MBA, Grad DipMgtSt, BSc,) is the Professor-Director of Health Informatics Management at Epworth HealthCare and a Professor in Health Informatics Management at Deakin University’s Faculty of Health. She researches and teaches within the information systems domain with particular focus on designing, developing and implementing IS/IT solutions to effect superior, patient centric healthcare delivery. She collaborates with leading scholars at various premier healthcare organizations throughout Australasia, US and Europe and has published more than 475 referred scholarly articles, more than 12 books, numerous book chapters, an encyclopaedia and has a well-established funded research track record.
Dr. Manuel Wiesche