GE Healthcare today announced a multi-year agreement with Oregon Health & Science University (OHSU), Oregon’s only academic health center, that will allow OHSU to oversee and help provide care to ICU patients across eight hospital sites via a “Virtual ICU” (VICU), using the GE Healthcare Mural Virtual Care Solution.
The COVID-19 pandemic is highlighting a pre-existing shortage of critical care specialists, nurses and other clinicians across the United States and around the world, according to a recent report from the RAND Corporation. Furthermore, a 100-bed hospital may have only one intensivist who can care for patients requiring complex care.
In response to the critical care shortage and in collaboration with OHSU, GE Healthcare developed a customized solution of care workflows that powers the OHSU VICU. The VICU benefits patients by keeping them in their local communities near family and friends; supports local economies by maintaining resources, such as ambulances and revenue, in the immediate area; and improves efficiency by allocating hospital beds, resources and staff for the most critical patients.
“Through the Virtual ICU, we can supplement the local expertise in a variety of ways and durations – from a single shift to several a week – bringing much-needed relief and support to the clinicians on the ground,” said Senior Vice President and Chief Operating Officer of OHSU Healthcare Joe E. Ness, M.H.A., R.Ph. “The VICU allows us to execute our vision of increasing the level of care in community hospitals, allowing patients across the state of Oregon to receive the care they need closer to home while reducing unnecessary transfers and optimizing ICU capacity in the area.”
Providing actionable data
The GE Healthcare platform that enables the OHSU VICU is called the “Mural Virtual Care Solution (Mural),” which integrates data from multiple systems and devices to digitize the hospital’s best practices and clinical protocols, and provide a comprehensive, real-time view of patient status that is scalable across a selected care area, hospital, or entire health system.
“I can fully focus on the patient – who may be physically hundreds of miles away — in real time, by watching vital signs, lab values, waveforms and other parameters,” said OHSU Associate Professor of Anesthesiology and Perioperative Medicine and TeleICU Medical Director Marshall Lee, M.D. “And by enabling audio and visual support in the patient room, I can virtually visit and collaborate with the local, bedside team.”
Mural will also support the OHSU goal of enhancing the quality of care throughout the system by providing analytics on clinical information, such as minutiae ventilation data and metrics on clinical and operational best practices, including pain, delirium and agitation management. Data tracked and generated by the VICU translates into metrics – such as length of stay and average ventilation days per patient — that hospitals can use to refine operations to support improved patient outcomes and increased efficiency.
“We are pleased to offer this flexible platform that delivers data from devices and systems regardless of manufacturer, going beyond the capabilities of the traditional tele-ICU,” said Tom Westrick, President and CEO of Life Care Solutions at GE Healthcare. “We listened to clinicians and designed this solution to allow specialists access to multiple intensive care unit (ICU) patients in one central place, allowing health systems to expand their virtual care settings as their needs evolve.”
GE Healthcare’s Mural can be customized based on specific clinical workflows, enabling intensivists and advanced nurses in a central location to support bedside teams as they care for patients in their communities. Mural can also support compliance documentation on healthcare associated infections (HAIs), and prevention measures such as thromboprophylaxis, stress ulcer prophylaxis and glucose management.
Enabled by Edison, GE Healthcare’s intelligence platform, Mural can be deployed on-premise via GE Healthcare’s Edge infrastructure or on the cloud, depending on customer preference and need.
Currently available in the United States, Canada, China, Korea, U.A.E. and Saudi Arabia, Mural is designed to help reduce the time for clinical teams to deliver responsive, timely, and compliant care by digitizing hospital defined protocols, care pathways, and Early Warning Scores (EWS).1
About GE Healthcare:
GE Healthcare is the $16.7 billion healthcare business of GE (NYSE: GE). As a leading global medical technology and digital solutions innovator, GE Healthcare enables clinicians to make faster, more informed decisions through intelligent devices, data analytics, applications and services, supported by its Edison intelligence platform. With over 100 years of healthcare industry experience and around 50,000 employees globally, the company operates at the center of an ecosystem working toward precision health, digitizing healthcare, helping drive productivity and improve outcomes for patients, providers, health systems and researchers around the world.
1 Enabled by DECISIOInsight® – a standalone medical device.