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Getting babies home quicker and safer

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Queen Elizabeth the Queen Mother Hospital

Mindray’s neonatal dashboards on the ePM patient monitors, have provided Queen Elizabeth the Queen Mother (QEQM) Hospital’s Special Care Baby Unit with a safer, more efficient method of measuring oxygen saturation levels.

Oxygen saturation (SpO2) is one of the key parameters measured in the Special Care Baby Unit (SCBU) at QEQM, part of the East Kent Hospitals University Foundation Trust. So, when the unit began to see SpO2 data discrepancies in its older equipment, resulting in extended discharge times for its vulnerable patients, the Trust invested in eight Mindray ePM devices. With the new devices came Mindray’s specialised neonatal dashboards, which provided the unit with a safer, more efficient method of measuring oxygen saturation levels.

 

“Weaning babies off oxygen using the new neonatal SpO2 function means they can be safely discharged home to their families much earlier.”

Tracey Twyman, ward manager, East Kent Hospitals University NHS Foundation Trust

 

Challenges

 

How specialised data improved patient care

When a baby remained on oxygen for an extended period of time, the SCBU would carry out an in-depth study for the affected neonate, which would often have to be repeated for accuracy.

The new ePM devices allow QEQM’s consultants to see recorded SpO2 data in one easy-to-read display, with customisable targets for each individual baby. Specially created on Mindray devices for neonatal environments, the dashboard provided the foundation for a fundamental shift in how the unit provides care for its babies.

The ePM’s neonatal dashboard drastically improved data reliability and reduced the need for lengthy sleep studies, helping staff wean babies off oxygen using simple bedside data analysis, instead of a possible 8-day process involving posting sleep studies to their sister site for downloading and analysis.

With Mindray’s clinical applications team, the unit designed its own unique oxygen therapy tool within the dashboard, improving the clarity of data and speed of patient care.

 

The solution

 

Outcomes

 

Conclusion

East Kent’s SCBU has fundamentally improved care for some of its most vulnerable patients, delivering babies back to their parents safer and faster than ever. The new system has helped the unit shorten the length of stay, increase data accuracy, and most importantly enhance patient safety.

New babies entering the unit are now supported by a smooth and safe transfer process, involving standardised saturation data which can be easily examined and monitored by staff at the bedside. Upon arrival, custom SpO2 targets can be set for individual babies and tracked through the night for morning analysis, resulting in faster discharge decisions.

Empowering the unit with these actionable saturation readings and customisable targets has improved patient care at an individual level and as a whole, saving money for the Trust by shortening the average length of stay in the process.

Mindray’s ability to produce such a significant improvement was met with great enthusiasm by the Trust, which subsequently installed the neonatal dashboard on all monitors in its HDU after recognising the software’s potential.

Published November 1, 2020