Improving EMS STEMI at Northeast Georgia Medical Center
At Northeast Georgia Medical Center (NGHS) in Gainesville Georgia, they were looking for a better way to respond to STEMI emergencies. When a patient experiences this very serious type of heart attack, STEMI, it is important that it be diagnosed quickly. They were looking to increase ECG accuracy, information access and to have better documentation, while in turn reducing the STEMI mortality rate. In order for the medical center to achieve these goals and have better patient outcomes, teams needed to avoid delays of any kind.
In the pre-hospital stage, the following posed obstacles to the timely and effective preparation of patients for direct transfer to the percutaneous coronary intervention (PCI) lab:
- Inability to accurately interpret ECGs and diagnose STEMI. The usual practice of taking pictures of ECGs is risky and leaves room for errors and inaccuracies.
- Medics had no access to hands-on physician cardiologist direction while in the field.
- Untimely notifications, leaving the medical center ill-prepared for the patient’s arrival.
- Delayed transfer of relevant patient information, vitals and medical history from the medics in the ambulance to the ED team delays time to treatment.
To tackle this challenge, Northeast Georgia Medical Center partnered with GD to implement GD’s CAREpoint™ Workstation and the GD e-Bridge™ mobile telemedicine app. GD CAREpoint allows for enhanced 2-way communication and data transfer between EMS and ED teams. Paired with the GD e-Bridge app, the two solutions allow for seamless communication between EMS, the ED and Hospital teams. This enhanced communication allows for easier transfer of patient vitals and information; leading to quicker treatment times, better patient hand-off and outcomes.
EFFECTS AND RESULTS
NGHS performs over 5,000 cardiac procedures and consults more than 30,000 patients each year. Using mobile telemedicine, the GD CAREpoint and GD e-Bridge encourages the EMS units to choose Northeast Georgia Medical Center over competing hospitals due to their improvements in STEMI response which has led to faster patient diagnosis and treatment.
The GD CAREpoint Workstation and e-Bridge mobile telemedicine app have allowed the Northeast Georgia Medical Center to increase the accuracy by enabling the communication between the EMS workers and cardiologists. The process allows them to remotely evaluate the 12-lead ECG from any monitor and pass on their recommendations to the STEMI coordinator and ED directors. While this has allowed NGHS to more accurately diagnose STEMI, it has also helped by reducing the amount of false cath lab activations that occurred if a STEMI was misdiagnosed. The savings from lessoning false lab activations more than covers the cost of the system.
Northeast Georgia Medical Center
NGHS is a not-for-profit community health system dedicated to improving the health and quality of life of the people of Northeast Georgia. NGHS is anchored by Northeast Georgia Medical Center’s three hospital campuses – NGMC Gainesville, NGMC Braselton and NGMC Barrow – with a total of 713 beds and more than 700 medical staff members representing more than 50 specialties. It is our mission to improve the health of our community in all we do.
GD enables smarter patient care by empowering hospitals, EMS, community healthcare and public safety with the most comprehensive, interactive, configurable, affordable, and integrated FDA listed medical communication and mobile telemedicine solutions. The benefits of which are enhanced workflows, minimized risk, reduced costs and improved patient outcomes. Learn more at www.general-devices.com.