GROVE CITY, Pa., April 9, 2021 /PRNewswire-PRWeb/ — Seriously ill or injured patients of Allegheny Health Network’s (AHN) Grove City Hospital may now have their critical care supported by an innovative telehealth solution. Grove City’s new virtual ICU (vICU) program, through a collaboration with St. Louis-based Mercy Virtual brings state-of-the-art telecommunication technology and remote patient monitoring and consultative services to each of the hospital’s seven ICU rooms, enabling Mercy Virtual’s board-certified intensivists to seamlessly interact and collaborate with care staff at the bedside.
Through the program, a patient’s vital signs are continuously monitored by Mercy Virtual clinicians via secure, encrypted connections. The team uses the two-way high-definition camera to observe the patient or interact with the onsite clinicians at AHN Grove City about the patient’s condition and plan of care.
“As a Level IV Trauma Center, AHN Grove City sees its share of patients who require critical care services,” said Suzanne Labriola, DO, AHN physician consultant for the hospital. “vICU plays an especially vital role in supplementing the onsite critical care team such that patients can remain here at Grove City to receive highly advanced care versus being transported to a quaternary facility in Pittsburgh. AHN is committed to keeping care in rural communities through initiatives like vICU in these hospitals.”
The Mercy Virtual launch at AGH Grove City is supported in part by a rural telemedicine grant awarded to the Allegheny Health Network Research Institute from the United States Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) Telehealth Network Grant Program.
Mercy Virtual is one of the healthcare industry’s premier providers of telehealth critical care services. Its vICU program, when integrated with bedside care, has led to notable improvements in patient outcomes and experiences, including 35% lower mortality rates and 30% reduction in time spent in the ICU compared to predicted length of stay, according to Mercy Virtual.
“The clinical staff at AHN Grove City is an extremely talented team of physicians, nurses and other caregivers,” said Dr. Labriola. “The additional specialized clinical expertise we now have available through Mercy Virtual should provide the community with even greater confidence in the capabilities of this hospital, and it’s another great example of how our hospital continues to grow and flourish as part of AHN.”
The launch of the vICU program at AHN Grove City is the latest step in AHN’s progressive implementation of this state-of-the-art technology and collaboration at its hospitals. AHN’s Jefferson, Allegheny Valley, Canonsburg and Saint Vincent hospitals are all participating in the vICU program.
“The expanded critical care capacity at AHN’s hospitals with Mercy Virtual has also been an extremely important resource in meeting the increased demand for such services at AHN over the past 12 months due to the COVID-19 pandemic,” Dr. Labriola said.
To date, more than 5,000 patients have received vICU services at AHN facilities through the Mercy Virtual partnership.
Virtual ICU support is one component of AHN’s growing portfolio of telehealth services. Earlier this month, AHN announced that it had carried out nearly 500,000 video visits and telehealth consultations in 2020
To learn more about telehealth at AHN, visit http://www.ahn.org/appointments/video-visits.
About AHN Grove City
AHN Grove City is a 67-bed acute care hospital in Mercer County, employing 300 health care professionals. Formerly Grove City Medical Center, the hospital has served the community for more than 40 years, and is the result of the merger of two smaller community hospitals, both of which were founded in the early 1900s. The hospital became part of the Allegheny Health Network in January 2020.
About Mercy Virtual
Mercy, named one of the top five large U.S. health systems for four consecutive years by IBM Watson Health, serves millions annually. Mercy is one of the nation’s most highly integrated, multi-state health care systems, including more than 40 acute care, managed and specialty (heart, children’s, orthopedic and rehab) hospitals, convenient urgent care locations, imaging centers and pharmacies. Mercy has 900 physician practices and outpatient facilities, more than 4,000 Mercy Clinic physicians and advanced practitioners and 40,000-plus co-workers serving patients and families across Arkansas, Kansas, Missouri and Oklahoma. Mercy also has clinics, outpatient services and outreach ministries in Arkansas, Louisiana, Mississippi and Texas. In addition, Mercy’s IT division, Mercy Technology Services, and Mercy Virtual commercially serve providers and patients from coast to coast.
JoAnne Clobus, Allegheny Health Network, 724-651-3205, [email protected]highmarkhealth.org
SOURCE Allegheny Health Network