Telemedicine

Tele-ICUs Cut Costs for Critical Care Patients

According to a study by the New England Healthcare Institute and the Massachusetts Technology Collaborative, widespread use of telemedicine technology in intensive care units could save 350 patient lives and more than US $122 million annually in Massachusetts, The report — titled ‘Critical Care, Critical Choices: The Case for Tele-ICUs in Intensive Care’ examined data from a demonstration project at the University of Massachusetts Memorial Medical Center and two Massachusetts community hospitals. The telemedicine technology allows critical care providers to monitor a greater number of ICU patients in several locations from a centralised command center. The report says that tele-ICU technology could help health care providers address the growing number of critical care patients and the decreasing supply of physicians who can treat them. The report found that tele-ICU decreased the length of hospital stays by an average of two days at UMass Memorial; also lowered mortality by 20% at UMass Memorial and by 13% at the community hospitals.

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