Innovation: Connected wristbands to optimize the management of operating rooms

3 May 2021
  • Share this article :

Collaboration between Evolucare and Centrak, represented respectively by Jean Verstraeten and Roby Peeters, has revolved around a common goal: optimizing the care pathway and operating room management.
By combining its operating room management and geolocation solutions, the Strasbourg Regional University Hospital (CHRU) has set up an even more efficient process in the outpatient surgery unit and is already considering new perspectives.
Testimonials and feedback from Caroline Feys, health executive.

The device is very easy to use and saves the team a lot of time thanks to automated patient follow-up. The teams refocus on patients, who are curious when the wristband is put on !

Caroline FEYS

Health executive, Strasbourg IHU (University Hospital)

The solution consists of a sensor and a tag. Sensors are installed in the hospital at strategic locations depending on the application. Tags are attached to the person or object to be geolocated. In the Strasbourg project, sensors were installed throughout the outpatient surgery pathway: admission, rest rooms, operating room, recovery room, etc. Tags are associated with patients, who wear them on the wrist in the form of a wristband. “This means the system can track the patient’s situation and feed this information automatically into the Evolucare OpRoom/QBloc solution,” explains Roby Peeters.
“This project brought the teams together,” says Caroline Feys, “but with different roles for each person,” adds Jean Verstraeten:
Centrak managed all hardware and communication aspects with the installation of the “relay antennas”, the signal processing server and the connected wristbands. In the operating room management solution, we developed an interface that receives data sent by the server and the screens that display this data. Subsequently, the IHU teams provided advice on the strategic positioning of the antennas to adapt the system to the organization of the unit and the care pathway of the patients in the unit.
Caroline Feys points out that it is very easy to use and saves the team a lot of time thanks to automated patient follow-up. The teams refocus on patients, who are curious when the wristband is put on!

In concrete terms, the solution saves time for both the staff and the hospital, while optimizing the management of operating rooms, for example by:

  • Increasing the number of procedures performed thanks to the rapid succession of cleaning phases to make the rooms operational.
  • Reducing manual input by nursing staff at each phase of the care pathway.
  • Measuring key times during the stay: waiting, operation, post-operative recovery room, etc.

 

For the Strasbourg IHU, the pilot of this project, this system could be used in a number of other areas: For example, automating the follow-up of patients due to undergo multiple examinations in the hospital on the same day. The project was presented to the Hautepierre Hospital which is very interested in its potential!

The current infrastructure of antennas (sensors) also helps, with minimal investment, track mobile medical equipment (image intensifiers, video tours, robots, etc.), the presence of staff in the operating room, etc. In other sectors, the technology is used to monitor patients in psychiatric facilities or nursing home residents for example.

On the technical side, the solution will be developed to allow for greater accuracy in terms of the location of tags, data update frequency and ergonomics. New technologies are also used to improve the life of wristband batteries or develop other types of emissions such as WiFi, RFID, infrared or Bluetooth.

About the Strasbourg IHU

The Strasbourg IHU – University Hospital, headed by Benoît Gallix, is a catalyst for innovation. It was created in 2011 as a scientific cooperation foundation and is the result of a partnership between the University of Strasbourg, the University Hospitals of Strasbourg, the Research Institute against Digestive Cancer (IRCAD) and INSERM.
Caroline Feys is a health executive with the University Hospitals of Strasbourg (HUS) and manages anesthesia and outpatient surgery paramedical teams at the IHU. Her experience in managing the planning and regulation of the surgery program, combined with her high level of use of the Evolucare OpRoom/QBloc software, meant that she was actively involved in the implementation of the patient follow-up system alongside Julien Ernwein, the IHU’s IT manager, his team and Mrs. Cathy Wolf, application manager of the Evolucare solution.

About Centrak

Centrak is a US company owned by Halma, a British holding company listed in London. Centrak specializes in geolocation in the health sector with various applications: location of patients, staff, equipment, etc.
Roby Peeters is Centrak’s International Sales Director. He joined the group more than 7 years ago, after 20 years in the field of geolocation (and in industry before that). Over the past 7 years, he has helped the group expand its sales outside North America with teams currently deployed on all continents.