Every day, around 300 sick children pass through the doors of Evelina London Children’s Hospital, one of the leading hospitals for children’s heart surgery in the United Kingdom. The hospital treats 100,000 children every year, including 6,000 for heart problems, and is focused on ensuring they receive the best possible care and access to state-of-the-art equipment and facilities. The clinic has earned an international reputation for cardiology, receiving patient referrals from around the world.
In cardiology, the echocardiogram is an imperative clinical diagnostic tool and its use is critical to ensure children who go through surgery have a successful operation. The enterprise team at Evelina London worked with Polycom, Inc. (PLCM), the global leader in open, standards-based unified collaboration to utilize the video collaboration technology in the hospital’s operating theaters. The cardiology consultants can now share high-quality images and collaborate in real-time to make informed decisions more quickly and help to reduce operation times. Watch the related video.
“One of the challenges we have is our cardiac surgeons are currently performing almost 500 operations per year,” said Dr. John Simpson, Consultant Paediatric Cardiologist. “For cardiologists to be physically present for all 500, even amongst a group, is very challenging. We wanted a more efficient means of being able to see the scans being performed in the operating theater.”
An innovative way of delivering healthcare
Video collaboration enables the on-service cardiologist consultant to examine high quality scans and feeds during complex operations over High-Definition (HD) video in real-time, without having to be physically present. The combination of a Polycom® RealPresence® Group 500 system and a Philips Ultrasound cart enables operators to transmit clear data and scan images in full HD to one of several review stations within the hospital. The on-service consultant collaborates in real-time with the surgical team via a Polycom® personal video collaboration system, reviewing the same scan data via video as the data viewed by the team in the operating room.
“In our practice to date, if a senior cardiologist is required for real-time review of intraoperative scan images then the on-service consultant needs to scrub, change into theater clothing and view the scan images in the operating theater. This takes around 90 minutes and may compete with other clinical commitments on the ward, intensive care unit or talking to parents.”
The new system allows the cardiologist to view the intraoperative images and communicate with the team in theater and cuts the time required down to around 5 minutes. The system ensures patients have quicker operations, diagnosis by the most senior doctors, and less time under anaesthetic – which is known to improve recovery. Clinicians’ time is more efficiently used. Hospital management saves about 1,300 hours of consultants’ and surgeons’ time each year – with even more efficiencies gained in nursing services and support. Staffing costs have been significantly reduced and now consultants can cut down the amount of time it takes to prepare to enter an operating theater. The time they save can be used to help more sick children and their parents.
About Evelina London Children’s Hospital
Evelina London Children’s Hospital is part of Guy’s and St Thomas’ NHS Foundation Trust. It treats around 50,000 children a year across hospital and community services. Facilities include 140 beds, a 20 bed intensive care unit, six operating theatres and a kidney dialysis unit. Evelina London cares for children from across south east London, and is also a regional referral centre, admitting children from all over the south east of England for highly specialist care. www.evelinalondon.nhs.uk
Polycom is the global leader in open, standards-based unified communications and collaboration (UC&C) solutions for voice and video collaboration, trusted by more than 415,000 customers around the world. Polycom solutions are powered by the Polycom® RealPresence® Platform, comprehensive software infrastructure and rich APIs that interoperate with the broadest set of communication, business, mobile and cloud applications and devices to deliver secure face-to-face video collaboration in any environment. Polycom and its ecosystem of over 7,000 partners provide truly unified communications solutions that deliver the best user experience, highest multi-vendor interoperability, and lowest TCO. Visit www.polycom.com or connect with us on Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn to learn how we’re pushing the greatness of human collaboration forward.
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