Remote home monitoring makes nurses more efficient

Know what a jaffle iron is? We didn't either. It's the Aussie name for what we might call a sandwich press.

What does that have to do with mobile healthcare? Nothing at all, except that's how one story describes a device that is enabling home monitoring and videoconferencing between centralized nurses and elderly and immobile patients spread across metro areas and rural communities. "You could have one registered nurse monitoring maybe 50 or 60 patients in a day using this remote patient monitoring, while they can only do 10 or 15 when they do it face-to-face," home-health nurse Margaret Scott tells Australia's 9 News.

Scott, a Canadian leading a pilot test of Intel Health Guide videoconferencing units in Australia, says the touch-screen devices do not replace a home visit for "hands-on" care such as wound dressing, but offer an alternative to driving all over town simply to check and monitor patient vital signs. "A lot of my nurses travel a hundred kilometers in the course of their community visits in a day," says Scott, "therefore we're making real effective use of the scarce commodity called the registered nurse."

For more information about this pilot and possible future uses of such monitors:
- click through to this 9 News story