In a world where doctors are increasingly using electronic medical records and digital health monitoring devices, the American Hospital Association has been lobbying hospitals to start using these new technologies.
As a result, it is now proposing that hospitals and physicians be required to offer a 24/7 hospital bed and health care program that would allow patients to be monitored for up to 12 hours a day, as well as a 24-hour computerized medical record system that would provide patients with up-to-date information about their health and well-being.
“It’s important that we get these technologies in place so that we can have better access to care, but it’s also important that the patients who have the need for care are treated,” said Beth Auerbach, president of the association’s hospital group, in an interview.
As hospitals seek to keep up with the evolving medical and nursing environments, they have also begun looking for ways to reduce the time patients spend in the hospital.
They are finding that hospitals are better equipped to deal with an increasing number of patients with chronic health conditions, including pneumonia, heart failure and dementia.
“We know that people with dementia are more likely to have a high-level of symptoms and that we have to treat those more aggressively,” said Dr. Michael J. Lechner, a professor of pediatrics and public health at New York University who has researched hospitals’ response to the increasing numbers of people with serious chronic illnesses.
That’s why many hospitals are trying to move away from traditional beds in the operating room, and to focus more on home care.
In many cases, the goal is to help patients stay in their homes longer, while reducing hospital stays by up to 90 percent or more.
In a recent study, New York City’s John Jay College of Criminal Justice and the University of Pennsylvania researchers found that patients in hospitals with high occupancy rates had a higher mortality rate.
In the study, the researchers found those who lived in hospitals had a significantly higher risk of dying from any cause, including a diagnosis of pneumonia or heart failure.
A number of other studies have shown that patients with dementia and other chronic illnesses are much more likely than healthy people to be hospitalized for more than 12 hours, said Lechners co-author, Dr. Jennifer Bittner, an associate professor of psychiatry at Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine.
That means the beds that have been used in the past for more intensive care, in some cases, are not always the best.
“We’re not going to use a bed that’s not appropriate for patients who are having heart attacks or who have a stroke or who are a severe diabetic,” Lechters said.
“It’s not going a hospital to have an oxygen machine.
So, for a long time, we’ve been thinking about the bed as the primary caregiver.”
One of the big changes in the last decade has been the emergence of new technologies to improve the efficiency of the bed, such as virtual reality and augmented reality.
While the technology has not yet reached hospitals, some hospitals are using the technology to help keep patients in their beds longer and in better physical condition.
“There’s been a big shift in our understanding of what is best for the patient, and what the best outcomes are,” said Elizabeth DeRosa, chief medical officer for Providence Health Care System in Rhode Island, which has seen a surge in patients with severe chronic illnesses over the past decade.
She said that while the new technology can be used to improve patient care, it has not been proven to be cost-effective.
In an article published in the journal Archives of Internal Medicine in February, she wrote that “the use of VR or augmented reality in hospital settings may be associated with lower hospital utilization and cost” and that it was “not clear whether these technologies will reduce utilization in a hospital setting.”
The use of the technology may also be associated, DeRos said, with patients not getting the same quality of care.
“There may be an expectation that there’s something more,” she said.
In the United Kingdom, the British Medical Association has issued a statement calling for hospitals to offer virtual reality in their wards.
In California, a coalition of doctors, nurses and patients has launched a group to help push for greater transparency in hospitals.
In California, which already requires hospitals to provide patient-centered care, the group wants to make the requirement more specific and transparent.
“This is about giving patients more information,” said the group’s chief executive, Dr.-elect Stephen Schaffer, in a phone interview.
“That includes a better picture of what the hospital is doing.
That means it means it includes a hospital’s plan to be more efficient and responsive to the needs of patients.”
In a separate study, researchers at the University, University of Oxford and the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine examined how health care spending in the United States has changed since the 1970.