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1.
BMJ ; 374: n2209, 2021 09 30.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1448003

ABSTRACT

OBJECTIVE: To determine if virtual care with remote automated monitoring (RAM) technology versus standard care increases days alive at home among adults discharged after non-elective surgery during the covid-19 pandemic. DESIGN: Multicentre randomised controlled trial. SETTING: 8 acute care hospitals in Canada. PARTICIPANTS: 905 adults (≥40 years) who resided in areas with mobile phone coverage and were to be discharged from hospital after non-elective surgery were randomised either to virtual care and RAM (n=451) or to standard care (n=454). 903 participants (99.8%) completed the 31 day follow-up. INTERVENTION: Participants in the experimental group received a tablet computer and RAM technology that measured blood pressure, heart rate, respiratory rate, oxygen saturation, temperature, and body weight. For 30 days the participants took daily biophysical measurements and photographs of their wound and interacted with nurses virtually. Participants in the standard care group received post-hospital discharge management according to the centre's usual care. Patients, healthcare providers, and data collectors were aware of patients' group allocations. Outcome adjudicators were blinded to group allocation. MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES: The primary outcome was days alive at home during 31 days of follow-up. The 12 secondary outcomes included acute hospital care, detection and correction of drug errors, and pain at 7, 15, and 30 days after randomisation. RESULTS: All 905 participants (mean age 63.1 years) were analysed in the groups to which they were randomised. Days alive at home during 31 days of follow-up were 29.7 in the virtual care group and 29.5 in the standard care group: relative risk 1.01 (95% confidence interval 0.99 to 1.02); absolute difference 0.2% (95% confidence interval -0.5% to 0.9%). 99 participants (22.0%) in the virtual care group and 124 (27.3%) in the standard care group required acute hospital care: relative risk 0.80 (0.64 to 1.01); absolute difference 5.3% (-0.3% to 10.9%). More participants in the virtual care group than standard care group had a drug error detected (134 (29.7%) v 25 (5.5%); absolute difference 24.2%, 19.5% to 28.9%) and a drug error corrected (absolute difference 24.4%, 19.9% to 28.9%). Fewer participants in the virtual care group than standard care group reported pain at 7, 15, and 30 days after randomisation: absolute differences 13.9% (7.4% to 20.4%), 11.9% (5.1% to 18.7%), and 9.6% (2.9% to 16.3%), respectively. Beneficial effects proved substantially larger in centres with a higher rate of care escalation. CONCLUSION: Virtual care with RAM shows promise in improving outcomes important to patients and to optimal health system function. TRIAL REGISTRATION: ClinicalTrials.gov NCT04344665.


Subject(s)
Aftercare/methods , Monitoring, Ambulatory/methods , Surgical Procedures, Operative/nursing , Telemedicine/methods , Aged , COVID-19/epidemiology , Canada/epidemiology , Female , Humans , Male , Medication Errors/statistics & numerical data , Middle Aged , Pain, Postoperative/epidemiology , Pandemics , Patient Discharge , Postoperative Period , Surgical Procedures, Operative/mortality
2.
Nurs Leadersh (Tor Ont) ; 34(1): 30-37, 2021 Mar.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1175768

ABSTRACT

In the field of digital health research, nurse leaders have an opportunity to be integral to the design, implementation and evaluation of virtual care interventions. This case study details the experiences of two emerging nurse leaders during the COVID-19 pandemic in providing research and clinical leadership for a national virtual health trial. These nurse leaders trained and led a national team of 70 nurses across eight participating centres delivering the virtual care and remote monitoring intervention, using the normalization process theory. This case study presents a theoretically informed approach to training and leadership and discusses the experiences and lessons learned.


Subject(s)
Aftercare/trends , Leadership , Monitoring, Ambulatory/methods , Nurse-Patient Relations , Patient Discharge/standards , Remote Consultation/instrumentation , COVID-19/epidemiology , Canada/epidemiology , Computers, Handheld/supply & distribution , Humans , Pandemics , Randomized Controlled Trials as Topic , SARS-CoV-2 , Surgical Procedures, Operative
3.
CMAJ Open ; 9(1): E142-E148, 2021.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1115548

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: After nonelective (i.e., semiurgent, urgent and emergent) surgeries, patients discharged from hospitals are at risk of readmissions, emergency department visits or death. During the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic, we are undertaking the Post Discharge after Surgery Virtual Care with Remote Automated Monitoring Technology (PVC-RAM) trial to determine if virtual care with remote automated monitoring (RAM) compared with standard care will increase the number of days adult patients remain alive at home after being discharged following nonelective surgery. METHODS: We are conducting a randomized controlled trial in which 900 adults who are being discharged after nonelective surgery from 8 Canadian hospitals are randomly assigned to receive virtual care with RAM or standard care. Outcome adjudicators are masked to group allocations. Patients in the experimental group learn how to use the study's tablet computer and RAM technology, which will measure their vital signs. For 30 days, patients take daily biophysical measurements and complete a recovery survey. Patients interact with nurses via the cellular modem-enabled tablet, who escalate care to preassigned and available physicians if RAM measurements exceed predetermined thresholds, patients report symptoms, a medication error is identified or the nurses have concerns they cannot resolve. The primary outcome is number of days alive at home during the 30 days after randomization. INTERPRETATION: This trial will inform management of patients after discharge following surgery in the COVID-19 pandemic and offer insights for management of patients who undergo nonelective surgery in a nonpandemic setting. Knowledge dissemination will be supported through an online multimedia resource centre, policy briefs, presentations, peer-reviewed journal publications and media engagement. TRIAL REGISTRATION: ClinicalTrials.gov, no. NCT04344665.


Subject(s)
Aftercare/trends , Monitoring, Ambulatory/methods , Patient Discharge/standards , Remote Consultation/instrumentation , Adult , COVID-19/diagnosis , COVID-19/epidemiology , Canada/epidemiology , Computers, Handheld/supply & distribution , Humans , Middle Aged , Postoperative Period , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , User-Computer Interface
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