There are a number of reasons why the use of continuous monitoring devices is on the rise throughout the nation’s (and the world’s) hospitals and healthcare facilities — and EarlySense Chief Operating Officer Karissa Price-Rico, PhD discussed them in detail at the 3rd annual Fortune Brainstorm Health conference.
As Dr. Price-Rico explained in a demonstration of the EarlySense hospital monitoring device (with the help of conference co-chair Dr. David Agus), the benefits of continuous monitoring are compelling not just in their power to improve patient safety, but also to offset some pressing financial concerns, as well.
“Nineteen-and-a-half billion dollars are spent in the U.S. healthcare system from adverse events,” she explained. “The bulk of that — actually 17 billion — [is] directly associated with additional medical expenses. Another billion, increased mortality rates, lawsuits, things like that. And then another billion is actually wasted on worker productivity.”
Dr. Price-Rico makes it clear: “This is taking its toll on our healthcare system.”
All the more reason to be excited about the possibilities of continuous monitoring. As Dr. Price-Rico explained during her demonstration, EarlySense’s FDA-cleared monitoring device has been shown by a clinical study to effect some powerful results, including:
- 86% reduction in code blue events
- 45% reduction in unplanned ICU transfers
- 10% reduction in length of stay
- 43% reduction in falls from bed
Adding up the Benefits of Continuous Monitoring — and Bringing Them Home
As Daniel Bentley points out in Fortune’s coverage of the event, a key advantage of the EarlySense monitor is that it’s designed to be as unobtrusive as possible. Compact and wireless, the device is placed beneath the mattress, with no sacrifice of comfort for the patient.
This is an upgrade from more traditional monitoring devices, he notes; after all, monitoring patients in relative comfort “can be a challenge when those receiving care are hooked up to a plethora of sensors measuring heart and respiratory rates, among other metrics.”
Beyond comfort, the device also offers versatility and accuracy, with the capability to measure heart rate within five beats per minute and respiratory rate within two breaths, explained Dr. Price-Rico. It can also capture respiratory rate depression caused by opioids, and alert clinicians to early warning signs of sepsis.
And its ability to monitor movement also makes the EarlySense device a major tool for fall prevention in hospitals, alerting attending clinicians to any sudden or erratic movement so “they can actually get into the room and help that patient before they end up on the floor,” Dr. Price-Rico said. That’s opposed to traditional methods, where, “by the time the nurse gets there, they've already fallen.”
The demonstration also offered a glimpse into how EarlySense continuous monitoring technology can be leveraged for safety in the home, as well as in the hospital. “The home version is just a small round disk that goes underneath the mattress,” making it even more compact and unobtrusive.
Dr. Price-Rico also explained how the underlying technology has been leveraged to develop an ovulation prediction solution for women. “So, if we can do that for fertility, imagine what we can do for chronic heart failure, for COPD, for other things, and really treat someone at home, and take care of them in a proactive way.”
But perhaps most importantly, continuous monitoring provides the data for clinicians to have meaningful conversations about their patients’ status and wellbeing, thereby demonstrating the ability “to actually impact real clinical outcomes that we all care about.”
For that reason — and many others — “we believe that it should be a care protocol in every hospital bed,” Dr. Price-Rico concluded.
You can watch Dr. Price-Rico’s presentation in its entirety here. For more information about how continuous monitoring solutions have evidence of improving patient safety and providing clinicians with data that can enhance decision making - .