South Florida Hospital News
Thursday April 27, 2017
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April 2017 - Volume 13 - Issue 10

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People suffering with conditions such as ADHD, anxiety, PTSD, depression, autism and memory loss face a number of challenges, including the amount of medication that must be taken to treat their symptoms. However, many patients have found success with neurofeedback

Spending time in a hospital - whether as a patient, a family member, or even as an employee - can be difficult. People are often worried or stressed, and usually aren’t feeling their best. But at Broward Health Medical Center, there is a group of people, in addition to employees, that go out of their way to improve the experience of everyone they meet - the hospital’s dedicated volunteers.

In March, Jupiter Medical Center adopted Watson for Oncology trained by Memorial Sloan Kettering (MSK), a cognitive computing platform to provide insights to oncologists to help deliver personalized, evidence-based cancer treatment. Jupiter is the first U.S. community hospital to adopt Watson for Oncology.

Major changes to U.S. health care policies will have a profound impact on patients, providers, investors and businesses in South Florida, the nation and around the world, according to experts at the conference, “The Business of Health Care Post-Election,” hosted by the University of Miami School of Business Administration March 3.

I guess that’s the extent of my advice to volunteers everywhere. My secret “sauce” when it comes to volunteering is delegate, delegate, delegate. (Of course, according to Carol, she’s usually who I delegate to.) But show me a volunteer who can’t delegate successfully and I’ll show you someone reluctant to repeat the experience. 

In today’s uncertain healthcare environment, healthcare professionals must also be business managers for their practices, their employees and their families. This task can be frustrating, daunting and overwhelming.

How do you use QuickBooks at your medical practice? Are you getting the most out of it?

My colleague, Meredith Tucker, CPA, is a Certified QuickBooks ProAdvisor and entrepreneurial services manager who works with businesses, including medical practices, on financial reporting and analysis, tax planning and compliance. 

From “repeal and replace” to blocked mega-mergers, almost nothing about the healthcare industry in 2017 is guaranteed.

But there is one thing you can count on—the cyber threats healthcare organizations dealt with in 2016 are here to stay. In fact, we believe they are going to get a whole lot worse.

While wireless location tracking technology is not a new thing - shipping companies use it every day - its benefits have really not been explored in the healthcare industry. MedsMeet, a Florida-based company co-founded by Dr. Michael Zahalsky and Brandon Mabey, is hoping to change that.

“In the last five years, Magic Band technology has been used in amusement parks and on cruise lines to provide information about population flow,” explained Dr. Zahalsky. “Our question was how do you implement this type of technology in a hospital setting? How do you utilize it in the medical field to improve efficiency and safety?”
 
MedsMeet is designed to provide wireless location services for tracking people, tools and equipment in hospitals and healthcare facilities.
 
“We have created a way to track surgical trays in and out of ovens, to and from surgical rooms, and in and out of storage rooms, so that when a doctor asks for a specific tray, they know where it is. This way, they always have the right surgical tools, which saves time,” said Mabey.
 
“When you have a beacon on every single significant tray or piece of operating room equipment, it can’t get lost or stolen,” added Dr. Zahalsky. “This technology wasn’t used before because RFID tags couldn’t be placed on trays cleaned in an autoclave, but we’ve solved that issue; we’re one of the only companies in the world offering auto-clave safe tracking technology.”
 
Mabey, who was previously in charge of developing, designing and deploying this same type of technology for Walt Disney World and different cruise ship lines, has redefined the hardware and software to specifically meet healthcare business models. In addition to using the technology to locate and protect equipment, it can also be utilized to keep patients safe, and to track staff workflow.
 
“This technology can track patients or guests who log into the hospital to make sure that they are on the right floor or are authorized to be in the section of the hospital that they’re visiting,” he explained. “It can also be used to determine if a patient has wandered from a room, or fallen in the bathroom so that staff can go check on them.”
 
Because the wristbands or necklaces that patients wear do not identify them by name but only by a number, patients’ identities are not compromised. “The patient tracking system has a unique identifier, so we don’t know who the patient is,” explained Mabey. “All we know is that hospital band #1 went into a room; only the hospital knows who #1 is. This helps ensure HIPAA compliance because patient data does not leave the hospital.”
 
Mabey believes that this technology could be of special importance in pediatric wards, where it is imperative to keep track of young patients. “You may have 40 kids checked in, and this way, you know where they all are,” he explained. “If the hospital doesn’t want them in certain areas, for example, near exit doors, an alert will be sent to nurses’ iPhones and desktops when a child is not where he or she is supposed to be.
 
“This not only mitigates risk, but can actually prevent a problem from happening,” he continued, adding that the technology can be customized to each hospital setting. For example, alerts can be sent to anyone within 100 feet of the exit door, or to staff members on the entire floor.
 
Dr. Zahalsky believes that the same technology that is used in Walt Disney World for population management - to help the company determine how to distribute people so that a specific park doesn’t get too crowded - can also be used to increase efficiencies in healthcare facilities. “From an administrative perspective, it could be used to see how long it takes for staff to perform certain tasks and to point out bottlenecks,” he explained.
 
“In the case of an emergency, it could let administrators know if everyone was out of the hospital; in an assisted living facility or rehab center, it could let staff know if a patient was left in a bathroom, or was in need of special assistance,” he continued.
 
“We’re all looking for efficiencies in healthcare, and while conceptually we knew that tracking technology existed, up until now it hasn’t been implemented,” he added. “We’ve figured out a way to do it.”

Expert witness testimony is essential to all medical malpractice legal proceedings. Usually, without a medical expert, plaintiffs cannot proceed to trial, and defendants are usually doomed to an adverse jury verdict. Medical experts are recruited in many ways, even from proprietary companies who offer a diverse variety of experts.

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