The first hospital in New Jersey to use check-in kiosks
to speed triage process
Newark, NJ --Newark Beth Israel Medical Center is the first hospital in New Jersey to deploy self-service kiosks in its emergency department to streamline the check-in and triage process. The MediKiosk™ software solution, from Galvanon, an NCR Corporation company, automates patient registration and helps emergency department staff prioritize treatment based on medical urgency.
“We are pleased to be at the forefront of providing expedited services to our Emergency Department patients,” says John A. Brennan, MD, FACEP, FAAP, Executive Director at Newark Beth Israel Medical Center. “Anyone with a family member who has visited an Emergency Department can appreciate our efforts to reduce stress and facilitate a more navigable system.”
Newark Beth Israel Medical Center began using the new kiosk system on November 13, 2007 and they currently have three wall-mounted kiosks and three portable devices for patients in wheel chairs.
An estimated 48 percent of emergency care departments are at or over capacity, according to the 2007 “Survey of Hospital Leaders” released this July by the American Hospital Association. MediKiosk helps staff to quickly determine which patients are experiencing the most pressing medical needs, which assists with patient volume.
“Our emergency department experiences an extremely high patient volume and the MediKiosk system expedites our check-in process,” says Tomas Gregorio, Vice President / Chief Information Officer, NBIMC. “Not only did we improve the way critical patients are prioritized in our busy ED, we also were able to triage four more patients per hour than before, beginning the first day we went live with the kiosks.”
According to Mr. Gregorio, the kiosks help the staff to better manage wait times and enhance patient satisfaction. The kiosks also provide patients with greater privacy in relaying the reason for their visit.
The kiosks are not for all patients and true emergency cases--such as car crash victims and patients experiencing a stroke-- are still rushed in for immediate treatment.
Patients not experiencing life-threatening emergencies when they arrive at Newark Beth Israel Medical Center’s emergency department can go to a registration kiosk instead of waiting in line to speak with a staff member. They enter their name on the touch screen, along with an additional identifier, such as a birth date. Patients indicate their symptoms by pointing to areas on a body diagram where they feel pain and answering brief questions about the nature of their visit. The computer shows the patient a list of ailments to choose from, like “pain” or “fever and/or chills,” The data is then sent to the emergency room’s main computer system for review by a nurse. This allows staff to provide patients with timely treatment based on medical need.
“We have found that patients have responded very positively to the new kiosks,” says Amy Doran, RN, MS, APN-C, Assistant Vice President at NBIMC. “Emergency Departments can sometimes be overwhelming to patients seeking care. Our goal is to make the entire process as stress-free as possible while maintaining an efficient emergency department that best meets our patient’s needs.”
Galvanon’s MediKiosk is part of a comprehensive suite of products that allows hospitals to provide patient self-service capabilities such as wireless patient check-in.
Date: February 4, 2008
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