11-Jun-2020

Healthcare providers need to leverage technology, such as asset tracking, to prevent equipment loss and free nurses and others from administrative tasks

Administration instead of caregiving

A few months before the current pandemic, I had a conversation about healthcare with a colleague who mentioned his spouse was quitting the nursing profession. But why would she leave a profession she loved? It was because she spent more time pushing paper and asset tracking than caregiving.

This shocked me, but didn’t surprise me because I had run into this a year earlier. In a meeting with a respected U.S. heart surgeon, he indicated that his nursing staff needed four hours to input each patient’s data into their healthcare records system - a frustrating exercise for everyone involved.

I began to see a common thread. Nurses spending time on administrative duties instead of spending time with patients. Nurses who are the face of healing are increasingly required to spend time away from their patients. Even though efficiency in finding information was gained through digital patient records, maintaining that information for healthcare providers as well as insurance companies has added to the workload in the healthcare system.

Healthcare providers need to leverage technology, such as asset tracking, to prevent equipment loss and free nurses and others from administrative tasks

Asset tracking nurses blog healthcare body image 500x300

More than one hour per day is spent looking for people and equipment

In addition to hours of data entry, a lot of time is spent looking for needed equipment or clinicians, whether doctors, nurses, nurse practitioners or even aides. All entered their respective professions to help treat and heal people. They didn’t enter their professions to spend hours doing data entry or paperwork.

However, this is the reality as health insurance providers and insurance companies, alike, require that every detail of a patient’s care pathway is logged, coded and appropriately billed.

Besides paperwork activities, nurses have their regular patients to see and usually need medical equipment such as heart rate monitors, infusion pumps, ventilators, and non-medical equipment such as mobile beds, wheel chairs and the like. In fact, nurses spend more than one hour per 12-hour shift looking for someone—such as a doctor or patient, or something such as medical/non-medical equipment.

So how can Alcatel-Lucent Enterprise help nurses reclaim some of this time away from patients?

ALE Asset Tracking reduces stress and wasted time

ALE has technology that drastically reduces the amount of time a nurse requires to find people or equipment down to minutes or even seconds.

The Alcatel-Lucent OmniAccess Stellar Asset Tracking solution displays locations of people and equipment on a floor plan map, with three to five meters accuracy using Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) asset tags. Stellar Asset Tracking interoperates with OmniAccess Stellar Wi-Fi or any third-party Wi-Fi infrastructure to locate assets in real-time.

Stellar Asset Tracking also enables hospitals to locate their equipment and maintain it properly—a multi, million-dollars cost savings for hospitals through prevention of equipment becoming lost, stolen, or improperly maintained.

With the simplicity of a smartphone app, a nurse can see the location of all tracked clinicians, patients and equipment and reserve the equipment they need, knowing it will be tagged so no one else can reserve it until that same nurse has designated the equipment as available again. The ability to save nurses time makes their jobs a little easier and helps hospitals improve patient care delivery by enabling nurses to spend more time with patients.

Asset tracking plays a small, but important role in helping reduce wasted time and stress on nurses. Our technology can be used to stop nurses and others from leaving their profession and give them back the time they want to spend with their patients.

Learn more in the Asset Tracking in Healthcare brochure.

Tags - Healthcare, Location Services, Optimized Care Network

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About the author
Daniel Faurlin

Daniel Faurlin

Director, Product & Solution Marketing and Head of Network Solutions for Healthcare - ‎Alcatel-Lucent Enterprise

Daniel is responsible for developing, positioning, communicating and educating internal and external clients, on the value proposition of ALE solutions in the Transportation and Healthcare verticals. He has worked in start-ups, small-to-large enterprise businesses, in a variety of executive leadership roles. Daniel is an Electrical Engineering graduate from Ryerson University in Toronto, Canada.

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