Most ICUs in India are understaffed with trained intensivists. Furthermore, many ICUs lack an effective ICU care delivery model that is ubiquitously effective and constantly managed by experts. Telemedicine departments, on the other hand, are rapidly expanding. This enables telemedicine to be used to improve ICU patient care in a variety of ways, which we will discuss here.
Accessing Data Remotely
Hospitals can use remote management to allow off-site intensivists to provide expert advice to on-site physicians when necessary. This is currently done over the phone. This model’s efficiency is hampered by inaccurate or insufficient information from the on-site physician. A two-way real-time visual data transmission allows an on-call intensivist to review the data and improve the system’s quality and productivity.
Putting Resources Together
Hospitals with a scarcity of intensivists could collaborate with high-quality critical care units to leverage their resources and expertise. This E-ICU model expands commercial opportunities as well as the penetration and utilization of limited resources.
To fill such gaps, rural hospitals without trained ICU staff can hire tertiary care facilities. Unfortunately, metropolitan India has a concentration of high-quality medical knowledge. Telemedicine can help diffuse knowledge, as well as enhance the management of crucial events that happen outside of the hospital and the inter hospital transfer of seriously ill patients.
Systematic Monitoring Techniques
Nursing personnel is also affected by the ICU staffing shortage. This, along with the fact that the majority of ICUs have more than 10 beds available, highlights the need for an alternate continuous monitoring approach that doesn’t rely on high staffing levels. Telemedicine can analyze clinical data, trigger clinical choices, and notify intensivists of aberrant physiological markers.
Each step in the critical care process begins with the integration of clinical data, followed by interpretation, action, and clinical consequence. The first two elements are supported by telemedicine. The third stage, action, calls for on-site personnel (assuming we are discounting the role of robotics, currently used in only two hospitals). Therefore, we need to train local professionals in fundamental ICU procedures and techniques in order to expand the reach of ICU telemedicine.
Tele-ICU Can Even Reduce Patient Complications
The longer patients are in an ICU, the greater their likelihood of developing complications. By monitoring ICU patients remotely, most of these complications can be avoided and according to a study, it was concluded that tele-ICUs can help reduce mortality rates by an average of 29%. The research in this study also showed that patients’ length of stay was reduced by a third when tele-ICU was used, which means that there are more beds for the critically or terminally ill.
Various advantages are: