Vendor notebook: Amazon Clinic now offers telehealth nationwide, Philips co-designs a custom virtual care platform

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Whether at home, on vacation or in the hospital, patients and care providers want access to innovative technologies that can expedite the delivery of medical advice, prescriptions, referrals and action when it is needed most. Virtual care technologies and artificial intelligence are helping health systems and healthcare retailers to improve care delivery.

Amazon Clinic virtual care visits are now available in all 50 states

The ability to access more immediate care via telehealth, including prescription refills, is now possible in every U.S. state, according to a media advisory by Dr. Nworah Ayogu, chief medical officer and general manager of Amazon Clinic, posted to the Amazon website.

“Last November, we introduced Amazon Clinic, a virtual health care marketplace that makes it easy for customers to quickly get the care they need for more than 30 common health concerns like urinary tract infections, pink eye and erectile dysfunction,” he said.

Amazon customers can connect via messaging or video call 24/7 to third-party healthcare providers – without an appointment or insurance – and review the cost before the visit begins.

“As a doctor, I’ve seen firsthand that patients want to be healthy but lack the time, tools or resources to effectively manage their care,” Ayogu said. 

Amazon customers can compare response times and prices from multiple telehealth provider groups, complete an intake form and then connect with their chosen provider on the website or Amazon mobile app.

Clinicians will provide recommended treatment plans which may include a prescription that can be filled through the pharmacy of their choice, including the Amazon Pharmacy.

Philips’ and CoxHealth’s AI-driven platform integrates RPM into acute care delivery

Going beyond electronic intensive care units and telehealth technology that outsource patient supervision for parts of the working day used by some hospital groups, Missouri-based CoxHealth hospital groups wanted a custom program to better serve its patient population as well as improve recruitment and retention at its acute care hospitals.

Last week the partners announced that every in-patient ICU and medical-surgical patient room at Cox South, Cox Medical Center Branson, Cox Barton County and Cox Monett hospitals outfitted with a platform that the partners say is based on the close integration of Philips eCareManager enterprise telehealth software and Philips Capsule Surveillance software. 

The system leverages AI and advanced clinical algorithms to synthesize patient data and aid CoxHealth clinical staff in identifying patients most at-risk so that they can allocate staff resources accordingly.

Its centralized database of patient information enables bedside and virtual care teams to collaborate and continuous analysis of live-streaming patient and medical device data are targeting CoxHealth’s goals for proactive care management, according to last week’s announcement. 

“From the outset, the Philips team worked alongside CoxHealth to fully comprehend the vision of CoxHealth’s leadership team and identify the necessary key performance indicators and impact measurements,” said Shiv Gopalkrishnan, business leader of electronic medical records and care management at Philips. 

The system sends caregivers to receive contextualized notifications and they can view patient data, such as acuity scores and vital signs waveforms and then access insights whether at the patient’s bedside, in the virtual care command center or elsewhere in a medical facility. 

When not bedside, audio-video links allow the virtual care team to interact directly with individual patients and bedside equipment when required.

“It was not a situation where we supplied a standard solution, it was an opportunity for us to listen and learn. We helped conceptualize the customer’s ideas and requirements as they designed a virtual care delivery program that would directly address the needs of their staff, while standardizing and improving care delivery and helping achieve the goal of better patient outcomes.”

PointClickCare to manage acute behavioral health at Massachusetts EDs

Patients with behavioral health needs that present at Bay State emergency departments will receive timelier admissions for appropriate services, according to PointClickCare.

“We are pleased to have found a technology partner who can streamline communication, address potential administrative burdens on our providers, and who is familiar with [Massachusetts Executive Office of Health and Human Services’] Expedited Psychiatric Inpatient Admission Protocol,” said Emily Bailey, chief of the office of behavioral health at MassHealth, in today’s announcement. 

The state wants to help hospitals reduce time spent in EDs and reduce lengths of stay for patients needing behavioral healthcare, particularly inpatient care. Through the system, providers will receive critical information and stakeholders will have the ability to identify trends and patterns regarding ED utilization for monitoring and policy purposes.

PointClickCare’s platform will support the automation of behavioral health referral screening, evaluation and referral processes while it enables the electronic transmission of admissions information and creates a real-time view of patients seeking behavioral health treatment, the company said.

“Our robust network in Massachusetts, including 94% of the acute network and 69% of the skilled nursing network, puts us in a unique position to enable hospitals, health plans and state agencies to identify patients in EDs awaiting care in places such as inpatient psychiatric treatment and improve those patients’ outcomes,” added Brian Drozdowicz, SVP and general manager of acute and payer markets at PointClickCare.

“Given the magnitude of the boarding crisis, collaboration between healthcare providers and the adoption of new, innovative solutions has never been more critical,” said Dr. Jason Tracy, chairman of emergency medicine at South Shore Health.

Andrea Fox is senior editor of Healthcare IT News.
Email: afox@himss.org

Healthcare IT News is a HIMSS Media publication.

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