Yale Researchers: Automated Tool Using EHRs to Successfully Identify Sickest Hospital Patients
From Yale News: A team of Yale researchers developed and tested an automated tool that uses electronic health records to identify patients most at risk of deteriorating while in the hospital. The team used criteria originally established to rapidly detect patients with sepsis, one of the most expensive and potentially deadly medical conditions in the United States. The researchers created software that directs the electronic health record system to notify an attending physician, via pager, as soon as a patient meets the criteria. When key vitals such as heart rate, blood pressure, and temperature change for the worse, the attending receives an automated text message. The tool — designed from the outset to be low-cost, easy to use, and highly sustainable — was used to monitor more than 15,000 patients in real time over one year and identified individuals at increased risk for admission to the ICU and for mortality. The study was a collaborative effort of investigators at Yale School of Medicine, Yale New Haven Health, and Yale Center for Analytical Sciences and was published in the Journal of Patient Safety.