New York hospital transforms TV into care tool

By Bernie Monegain
10:16 AM

The Children's Hospital at Montefiore will deploy new technology to provide interactive patient care throughout the 130-bed facility.

Automated patient education is an integral component of the new service, said hospital executives, and nurses will be able to order education programs specific to each patient and track its completion all from their existing electronic health record system.

The new service also provides entertainment, tracks bed turnover rates, and it is also aimed at creating new workflow efficiencies for hospital staff.

CHAM will roll out GetWell Town, a pediatric version of GetWellNetwork's flagship Interactive Patient Care solution. GetWell Town will be powered by Optimum Lightpath's fiber optic network and turn the hospital's in-room televisions into tools for clinical teaching and entertainment. The new technology will be deployed over a six-month period.

Using GetWell Town, patients and families will be able to learn more about their diagnosis, connect with friends using e-mail and IM, and find out more about their caregivers. GetWell Town, which is designed for children, delivers exclusive health education content from KidsHealth using interactive videos to improve patient education and engagement.

"CHAM currently delivers the most advanced medical care to its pediatric patients in metro New York," said Jack Wolf, vice president and CIO at Montefiore. "Interactive Patient Care will further distinguish Montefiore by dramatically enhancing the child's and family's experience of entertainment, education and clinical engagement."

Wolf said Optimum Lightpath has always offered Montefiore tremendous value and the most advanced technology. "This is yet another example of how this long-standing relationship helps us keep our network and services on the cutting edge, delivering a significant positive impact on our ability to administer premium patient care," he said.

"Hospitals are moving away from simple entertainment solutions on television and embracing the opportunity to provide patients with interactive learning tools that influence positive health outcomes while improving patient satisfaction," said Michael O'Neil, Jr., founder and chief executive officer of Bethesda, Md.-based GetWellNetwork.

"Today, Optimum Lightpath works with more than 70 percent of hospitals in the New York metropolitan area, helping them to transform patient care," said Dave Pistacchio, president of the company. "We are in tune with the unique needs of healthcare providers in our service area and our exclusive relationship with GetWellNetwork to deliver Interactive Patient Care represents our ability to provide significant value to our customers beyond traditional communication services."

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