News items Continuous monitoring of patients most important vital signs improves patient safety

23 March 2022

The ViSi Mobile is a wrist monitor that can measure patients' most important vital signs day and night (24/7). After almost 5 years of trial runs and scientific research, the Radboudumc will now deploy this wrist monitor on 7 wards and 117 beds to improve patient safety. Research shows that thanks to the wrist monitor and the timely detection of patient deterioration, there are 32% fewer unplanned ICU admissions.

During hospitalization, patients' most important vital signs (blood pressure, heart rate, temperature, respiratory rate and oxygen uptake) can deteriorate. To detect this in time, a nurse assesses these key body functions daily using the modified early warning score (MEWS). This score reflects the degree of instability of the patient at that time. Since the introduction of the MEWS, the number of unplanned ICU admissions decreased as well as hospital mortality. However, research showed that because of the interval measurement of the MEWS, the intermediate deterioration of key body functions may be missed.

In order quickly detect that a patient is deteriorating, the American company Sotera developed a new tool: a wrist monitor, called ViSi Mobile. This wrist monitor allows you to monitor patients' breathing, heart rate, blood pressure, saturation and skin temperature day and night.

The ViSi Mobile system with the wrist monitor.

32% fewer unplanned ICU admissions

In 2017, surgeon and professor of surgical education Harry van Goor and internist Bas Bredie began a trial of wireless continuous (24/7) monitoring of key body functions in 60 patients in the departments of Surgery and Internal Medicine at Radboudumc. The study examined the extent to which the number of unplanned ICU admissions decreased since the introduction of this ViSi Mobile.

Recently published research by Yassin Eddahchouri et al. (2022) showed that with the introduction of the ViSi Mobile from August 2017 to July 2019, there were 32% fewer unplanned ICU admissions compared to the years prior to this intervention. In addition, the number of calls to the medical emergency team (MET) within the Radboudumc decreased. A total of 2,023 patients, without the ViSi Mobile and 1,873 patients, with the ViSi Mobile, were included within this study.

Deployment during COVID-19

With COVID-19, the rollout of the ViSi Mobile gained momentum. All isolated patients on a nursing ward could be monitored remotely with the ViSi Mobile. A drop in the patient's oxygen level could be spotted more quickly, and appropriate oxygen therapy could be initiated quickly. In addition, the patients reported feeling safer and the system generated many positive experiences among medical staff.

Complete product

After the successful trial period of almost 5 years, more than 10.000 monitored patients and several studies, the Radboudumc will use the ViSi Mobile as a full product to improve patient safety. On March 18, 7 departments (117 beds) officially went live with the latest version of the wrist monitor. These are the departments of Surgery, Internal Medicine, Gastrointestinal Diseases, Urology/Gynecology, AOA (Acute Admissions Department), Neurology and Neurosurgery.

‘This is my life!’

An admitted patient in the Surgery Department enthusiastically told nurse Robin Verweij what he thought of the pulse meter. On his left wrist he wore his own smartwatch, on his right wrist the ViSi Mobile. Laughing, he made the comment, lifting his left arm first and then his right: 'This is my time and this is... my life!'

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