Toronto General Hospital Deploys Vocera Smartbadge to Protect and Connect Care Teams During COVID-19 Patient Surges
Thursday, July 8, 2021
SAN JOSE, Calif.–(BUSINESS WIRE)– Vocera Communications, Inc. (NYSE:VCRA), a recognized leader in clinical communication and workflow solutions, today announced Toronto General Hospital (part of the University Health Network) deployed the wearable Vocera Smartbadge across three of its intensive care units (medical-surgical, cardiovascular and coronary) to help improve staff response times during surges of COVID-19 patients. The voice-controlled Smartbadge enables clinicians to communicate and collaborate quickly and efficiently even while wearing personal protective equipment (PPE).
“In the early days of the COVID-19 pandemic, one of the common challenges staff faced was difficulty in hearing each other over PPE, creating potential barriers in patient care and staff safety,” said Linda Flockhart, Clinical Director at the Peter Munk Cardiac Centre and Medical Surgery Intensive Care Unit, University Health Network. “Through an innovative and simple-to-use device, Vocera has brought personal protection and clear communication together.”
A nurse, doctor, or other care team member wearing a Smartbadge can initiate communication by saying, “OK, Vocera” followed by simple voice commands, like “call anesthesiology” or “call the emergency response team.” Clinicians can connect with the right person or group quickly and safely, saving critical time and resources. By simply saying a name, role or team, healthcare workers can collaborate completely hands-free, even in isolation, while scrubbed in, or wearing surgical gloves.
“Most of our nursing staff were up and running with the Vocera Smartbadge in a few minutes,” said Dr. Andrew Steel, Attending Physician, Medical-Surgical Intensive Care Unit and Assistant Professor, University of Toronto. “The Smartbadge is very easy to use, and just what we needed at a time when there were a thousand other things to be learned during the growing challenges of the pandemic. There were new protocols, new technologies, new people, and new procedures. It was a relief to have something so intuitive to keep staff connected.”
Purpose built for healthcare, the Vocera Smartbadge combines hands-free capability with smartphone functionality. The device’s 2.4” touchscreen enables clinicians to receive prioritized clinical events, read notifications with patient context, and send secure text messages, to accelerate care and improve patient safety. Additionally, the Smartbadge has a dedicated, one-touch panic button so healthcare staff can get help quickly in emergency situations.
“Hands-free communication technology can be a lifeline for frontline healthcare workers who need to reach help fast and access resources without introducing the risk of infection,” said Brent Lang, Chairman and CEO of Vocera. “It is our mission to help protect and connect care team members, so they don’t feel isolated or alone. We are proud to support University Health Network during the coronavirus pandemic and beyond.”
About University Health Network
University Health Network consists of Toronto General and Toronto Western Hospitals, the Princess Margaret Cancer Centre, Toronto Rehabilitation Institute, and The Michener Institute of Education at UHN. The scope of research and complexity of cases at University Health Network has made it a national and international source for discovery, education and patient care. It has the largest hospital-based research program in Canada, with major research in cardiology, transplantation, neurosciences, oncology, surgical innovation, infectious diseases, genomic medicine and rehabilitation medicine. University Health Network is a research hospital affiliated with the University of Toronto. www.uhn.ca
The mission of Vocera Communications, Inc. is to improve the lives of healthcare professionals, patients, and families. Founded in 2000, Vocera provides solutions that help protect and connect team members, simplify workflows, increase efficiency, enhance quality of care and safety, and humanize the healthcare experience. More than 2,300 facilities worldwide, including nearly 1,900 hospitals and healthcare facilities, have selected Vocera solutions to enable their workforce to communicate and collaborate with co-workers and engage with patients and families. Mobile workers can choose the right device for their role or task, including smartphones or one of the company’s wearable communication devices, and use voice commands to easily reach people by name, role, or group. The hands-free Vocera Smartbadge was named to TIME’s list of the 100 Best Inventions of 2020. The Vocera Platform can integrate with more than 150 clinical and operational systems, including electronic health records, nurse call systems, ventilators, physiological monitors, and more. In addition to healthcare, Vocera solutions are found in aged care facilities, veterinary hospitals, schools, luxury hotels, retail stores, power facilities, and more. Visit www.vocera.com to learn more, and follow @VoceraComm on Twitter.
Vocera® and the Vocera logo are trademarks of Vocera Communications, Inc. registered in the United States and other jurisdictions. All other trademarks appearing in this release are the property of their respective owners.
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