In healthcare, patient safety is paramount. However, security is often jeopardized by labor-intensive systems. In many areas of a hospital or other healthcare facility, manual checks must be carried out daily. These include checking the temperature at which medicines are being stored, checking temperatures to mitigate any risk of Legionnaires’ disease, and checking for leaks to avoid damp and airborne mold, to name just a few.
Manual checks are time-consuming, reducing the amount of time available for direct patient care. When reviews are performed amid busy shifts, key details can be missed. Even when data is collected correctly, it can often be inadequate.
For example, a check of a medicine’s storage temperature every 24 hours would fail to promptly catch any temperature fluctuations that occurred between those checks due to hot weather or an intermittent power outage. This could lead to compromised medicine, which could threaten patient safety.
Solving these temperature monitoring problems was previously too complicated — or too expensive — to undertake with technology. But, thanks to advancements in healthcare IoT, that is no longer the case.
Tangible Results at NHS
Infogrid is solving such problems today for the UK’s National Health Service (NHS) by creating an automated cold storage monitoring system.
The Infogrid IoT system is designed to be simple to use and meager cost. No technical expertise is required to operate or set up the system in a healthcare facility.
Retrofitting these sensors to existing assets takes seconds, so set-up for entire buildings and hospitals can occur quickly. Now installed in 120 National Health Service sites across multiple Trusts, the sensing system focuses on cold storage monitoring, with sensors applied to pharmacy refrigerators and freezers. It automates daily hospital tasks such as medicine temperature checks, fire door monitoring, comfortable temperatures for patients, and much more.
This has resulted in a quick ROI of fewer than three months for the National Health Service and significant improvements to patient care.
The National Health Service was able to:
- Secure vaccine and drug inventory
- Save 10,000 hours of nurse time in a year (1 Trust)
- Get 598 percent ROI within the first year of installation (based on 1 trust losing $334,926 of drug stock in 2019)
- Take immediate action thanks to real-time alerts
- Manage sites remotely off-site and centrally
Hear From Infogrid and NHS
“The Infogrid system has already delivered significant benefits toward this goal across the Trust, particularly in pharmacy medicine storage,” said the Head of Estate, National Health Services. “However, we see opportunities for improved patient care and cost savings in many areas throughout the estate. These include monitoring for conditions that could cause Legionnaires’ disease, patient well-being (including ambient temperature optimization for better recovery and bedside assistance), fire safety, and much more. What’s great about the system is that it can deliver these benefits while generating a very quick return on investment.”
“The cost is so low that the system generates an ROI in less than three months, and that’s just based on staff time saved,” added William Cowell de Gruchy, CEO of Infogrid. “The wireless, 15-year battery life DT sensors are extremely small and require no setup or maintenance, matching the simplicity of the Infogrid system and resulting in powerful data and alerts that are up and running in minutes.”