eICU monitors round-the-clock
The nurses on staff at LIJ Valley Stream's ICU cared for Mr. Edwards by his bedside, but there was another team of nurses also caring for him, remotely. Through Northwell's eICU, an off-site facility in Syosset, critical care nurses monitor patients 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Nurses in the eICU have audio and video capabilities to watch over patients and zero in on physical trends that may need immediate attention. They can 'camera-in' to communicate directly with ICU staff and family members who are at a patient's bedside.
"I had never heard of the eICU and I was amazed when I saw it," said Mrs. Edwards. "I actually used it and I didn't think I would have to because the ICU staff were so on the ball. But there was a point when I wanted an update on my husband's medications and his condition. I just hit the button and there was this beautiful nurse, Christina on the camera, I could see her and speak to her and she answered all of my questions. And I got that by just hitting a button. She came up on the screen from Syosset, it's incredible."
Mrs. Edwards said that when people have family members in the ICU, they are naturally concerned. "To have someone available like that 24 hours a day, watching your loved one in their room, you cannot ask for more than that. I think it's fantastic."
"Remote monitoring is a big benefit for us," said Arlene Ramirez, RN, former ICU nurse manager and current ED director "We were the first Northwell site to go live with this in December 2014. It's really a collaboration between the nurses here in the ICU and the critical care nurses who monitor our patients remotely. It's continuous. They are always watching the patient's trends, vital signs, laboratory changes in status, medications, anything that is continuous. And it provides the families with reassurance."
Mrs. Edwards says she was also happy that the hospital provides patient education. "Staff members are explaining to my husband how important it is for him to take his medication. They got through to him, I've been married to him for almost 37 years and I haven't been able to get through to him, they did."
"I turned around very fast because of the care here," said Mr. Edwards. "The doctors and nurses really did a good job. I could have died from this, and now I realize I need to change my diet, my lifestyle, and talk to somebody. This really changed me a lot."