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Roper St. Francis Healthcare launches multi-hospital tele-ICU initiative with Advanced ICU Care

The bedside teams at RSFH's three hospitals will be supported by Advanced ICU Care's team of intensivists and nurses.

Jeff Lagasse, Associate Editor

Nonprofit South Carolina-based health system Roper St. Francis Healthcare has rolled out tele-ICU services in three of its full-service hospitals, in partnership with high-acuity telemedicine provider Advanced ICU Care.

The implementation includes Roper St. Francis Mount Pleasant Hospital, Bon Secours St. Francis Hospital (West Ashley), and the recently opened Roper St. Francis Berkeley Hospital (Summerville).

Roper St. Francis Healthcare partnered with Advanced ICU Care in collaboration with the Medical University of South Carolina, or MUSC Health, to enable the tele-ICU service offering in support of both its critically ill patients and bedside care teams.

RSFH is a provider of adult healthcare in South Carolina's Lowcountry and offers a healthcare network with services in more than 110 facilities and doctors' offices located throughout the region.

WHAT'S THE IMPACT

Telehealth has gained traction in recent years with patients, providers and payers, as regulations and reimbursement increasingly support its use.

The bedside teams at RSFH's three hospitals will be supported round the clock by Advanced ICU Care's team of intensivists, advanced practice providers, and nurses with advanced critical care training. Operating from nine technology-enabled care centers, the company's clinical teams are expected to deliver expertise that leads to better clinical results.

RSFH's stated goal is to provide its communities with intensivist oversight and earmarked Advanced ICU Care as the provider with the best fit, given its experience in the high-acuity telemedicine space.

Its ICU-specific quarterly performance reporting was also an attractive aspect for RSFH, as the reports provide actionable ICU data.

THE LARGER TREND

Many admissions to the intensive care unit may be preventable, potentially decreasing healthcare costs and improving care, according to research published online in October in the Annals of the American Thoracic Society.

In "Potentially Preventable Intensive Care Unit Admissions in the United States, 2006 - 2015," the authors analyzed more than 16 million ICU admissions and estimated that between one in six and one in seven such admissions might have been avoided.

The wellspring of this conclusion comes from three large data sources from 2006-15: Medicare Fee-for-Service, a Medicare Advantage plan and a large private national insurer. Altogether, the data sources represented nearly two-thirds of U.S. adults age 65 and older and about 13% of the U.S. population. During this time, there were nearly 100 million hospital admissions, of which 16.7% included an ICU admission.

ON THE RECORD

"Roper St. Francis Healthcare embraces the use of telemedicine to provide state-of-the-art care for our community," said Dr. Mitch Siegan, Roper St. Francis Healthcare chief medical officer. "We are proud to expand our ICU care to include Advanced ICU Care's tele-ICU services, giving our bedside teams 24/7 support and improving clinical outcomes for our critically ill patients."

"Advanced ICU Care is pleased to partner with Roper St. Francis Healthcare and serve as its trusted tele-ICU partner for critical care services," said Lou Silverman, CEO of Advanced ICU Care. "Through this collaborative critical care partnership, both state-of-the-art technology and our team of board-certified specialists will support their facilities and enable improved outcomes and clinical best practices."

Twitter: @JELagasse

Email the writer: jeff.lagasse@himssmedia.com

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