In an emergency, hospitals need to be able to quickly and safely transport patients to other facilities, along with all the specialized equipment, such as ventilators and intravenous medications, that patients need. That can be a monumental task, particularly in the heat of a crisis.
“Before, in an emergency, nurses and doctors would have to commit a great deal of time to figuring out who needed what resources and what needed to be done,” said Ronald Cohen, MD, clinical professor of neonatal and developmental medicine at the School of Medicine.
Lucile Packard Children’s Hospital Stanford now has a new electronic medical records system that helps make this transfer process safer and more efficient in the event of a major crisis, such as an earthquake or power outage. Caregivers have prompt access to a fully automated report that categorizes patients in terms of their specific needs, such as what types of intravenous medication they receive, whether they’re on ventilators or whether they need an intensive care unit bed.