Baptist Health cautiously expands telehealth facilities to more than 700 hospital beds –

What you should know:

– Baptist Health, a leading health system in Arkansas, and Caregility, a provider of smart telehealth devices, today announced a significant expansion of their partnership. This collaboration aims to transform the way patient care is delivered through the use of telehealth technology across Baptist Health’s hospital network.

– Caregility Cloud™ is a trusted platform used by over 1,000 hospitals across the United States. It is recognized for its high reliability, adaptability to a variety of workflows, and seamless integration with existing clinical platforms such as Epic.

Doubling success: 700 beds equipped with telehealth devices

The partnership will significantly expand Baptist Health’s use of Caregility’s smart telehealth devices. More than 700 beds across the system will be equipped with this technology, doubling the reach of Baptist Health’s inpatient telehealth services. This initiative adds virtual care resources to complement in-person care with the goal of improving patient outcomes.

Building on a strong foundation

Baptist Health has already achieved success with virtual admission and discharge programs, supported by more than 300 Caregility telehealth devices across 11 hospitals. Since 2021, their partnership with Caregility has resulted in a staggering increase in the number of telehealth sessions, from approximately 1,000 per quarter to over 20,000.

Success breeds expansion: virtual nursing is system-wide

The positive impact of Baptist Health’s initial virtual care programs led to implementation across the system. In early 2023, they launched the first virtual nursing program in Arkansas, providing additional support to bedside nurses, patients and families. Initially implemented at the Baptist Health Rehabilitation Institute, this program has now expanded to hospitals in Stuttgart, Malvern and Heber Springs. Based on positive patient outcomes and feedback, Baptist Health plans to implement virtual care programs on every medical and surgical floor throughout the organization.

Investments in technology and infrastructure

As part of this expansion, Baptist Health will deploy the latest Caregility telehealth devices and the award-winning Caregility Cloud™ platform in more than 500 additional patient rooms in key hospitals:

  • Baptist Health Medical Center-Little Rock (flagship hospital)
  • Baptist Health North Little Rock Medical Center
  • Baptist Health-Fort Smith

These advanced devices will support the development of virtual nursing services and the upcoming implementation of virtual support staff and providers. Additionally, a centralized center dedicated to virtual nurses and virtual caregivers has been established at Baptist Health Medical Center-Little Rock.

More attention on patients, less pressure on staff

This partnership significantly increases the support available to patients by adding virtual resources. Virtual nurses and support staff can perform tasks that would typically burden bedside staff, relieving stress and allowing them to focus on more complex patient needs. Increased use of telehealth in acute care settings has been shown to improve efficiency, reduce patient wait times, and improve overall throughput (the flow of patients through the hospital system).

Greater patient satisfaction and access

The availability of virtual care options at the bedside not only benefits staff, but also improves patient satisfaction, as early field studies have shown. Caregility Cloud™ enables Baptist Health to centralize and scale a variety of virtual care programs, including virtual care, consultations, roundings and patient follow-ups. This not only improves workflow efficiency and staff flexibility, but also facilitates collaboration with remote specialists and translators, promoting greater patient access and health equity.

“Embracing virtual support as part of our acute care bedside support and quality strategy signifies a pivotal step forward in how we envision the future of healthcare at Baptist Health. Baptist Health first added virtual care in 2005, and we have continued to advance with the latest technology bringing us to where we are today with our partnership with Caregility. This expansion is more than an initiative; it’s a commitment to providing health equity across our state, setting new standards in patient and provider satisfaction, and furthering our mission to be the employer of choice in Arkansas,” said Kourtney Matlock President of Baptist Health Rehabilitation Institute and system post-acute services.