Norfolk, Virginia- November 17, 2003 - Patients in the Intensive Care Units (ICU) at Sentara Leigh Hospital are the latest to come under the watchful eye of eICU® solution, the cutting edge technology Sentara pioneered that is saving lives. Highly advanced life monitoring equipment and computer software presently online at four Sentara Hospitals has produced the most dramatic reduction of intensive care mortality through the use of technology in the history of ICU care.
Intensive care patients at Sentara Leigh Hospital, Sentara Norfolk General Hospital, Sentara Bayside Hospital and Sentara CarePlex Hospital are now continuously monitored and managed by intensivists who work online from a remote eICU location when primary care physicians are not at the patient's bedside.
Through an elaborate network of cameras, monitors and two-way communication links, doctors and critical care nurses at the eICU command center make virtual rounds of patients. Intensivists can monitor the condition of patients, check vital signs and communicate with hospital staff, patients or family members.
"This system has shown it can save the life of more than one patient per week in two separate intensive care units," says Steven A. Fuhrman, M.D., Sentara medical director for the eICU center. "The eICU system shows us each day what happens when you merge the best technology with the most qualified medical professionals."
The eICU technology by VISICU efficiently manages scarce intensivist resources while also helping to meet recently defined Leapfrog standards of quality care giving. The Leapfrog Group was formed by Fortune 500 companies and other large healthcare purchasers to monitor patient safety. Hospitals around the country are committed to meeting higher standards of care giving, including providing board certified intensivists to manage the ICU.
The eICU system has already been extremely successful in reducing mortality rates at other Sentara facilities. An independent study performed by Cap Gemini, Ernst & Young (CGEY) shows the eICU solution reduced intensive care mortality rates at Sentara Norfolk General Hospital by 25 percent and shortened the average length of stay for these patients by 17 percent. This study also revealed that Sentara's per patient costs dropped $2,150 based on reduced patient expenses and increased ICU capacity.
"Mortality rates plunged when our around the clock reaction time became a matter of seconds," says Rod Hochman, M.D., senior vice president and chief medical officer for Sentara Healthcare. "Nothing that we have seen to date has so dramatically altered the quality of care for intensive care patients."
EICU® is a registered trademark of VISICU Inc.