By Dominic Coyle
Irish healthcare technology group Oneview has launched a system that allows medical staff and family to communicate virtually with Covid-19 patients in hospitals and nursing homes.
The company is talking to the HSE about using the software in Irish hospitals amid ongoing concerns about the risk of infection among medical and other hospital staff.
Oneview, which is listed on the Australian Stock Exchange, has already introduced the devices in four teaching hospitals in New York, a city that has been battling an escalating Covid-19 crisis in recent weeks.
The Oneview Cloud for Covid-19 is installed on computer tablets that are then allocated to coronavirus patients. The software allows doctors and patients to hold consultations as well as allowing friends and family to participate, and even has a virtual interpretation service.
In common with other Oneview hospital software offerings, it also provides patients with up to date information on the infection as well as various entertainment options.
“Healthcare organisations are having to rapidly adapt now to ensure they can deploy critical resources where they are needed the most,” said Oneview chief executive James Fitter, “and one of the big changes is to the daily ‘rounds’ to monitor patients”.
“This is extremely difficult during a pandemic because of the need for clinicians to wear personal protective equipment (PPE) which is in short supply. Our solution enables ‘virtual rounds’, eliminating unnecessary exposure between clinicians and patients, preserving scarce PPE and ensuring clinicians are being deployed for critical clinical care.”
He said the feedback from both medical professionals and clinicians and patients at NYU Langone Health had been “very positive”.
Mr Fitter said the Oneview Cloud technology was “designed for rapid deployment and does not require new infrastructure, on-site servers or integrations with other systems”.
The tamper-proof tablets are supplied by Oneview. When a patient is discharged, all their user data is wiped from the tablet which is then sanitised and available for another patient. Oneview was founded by Irish businessman Mark McCloskey in 2007. He remains president of the company and its largest individual shareholder.