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1.
Health Policy Open ; 2: 100051, 2021 Dec.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1454155

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: UC San Diego Health System (UCSDHS) is the largest academic medical center and integrated care network in US-Mexico border area of California contiguous to the Northern Baja region of Mexico. The COVID-19 pandemic compelled several UCSDHS and local communities to create awareness around best methods to promote regional health in this economically, socially, and politically important border area. PURPOSE: To improve understanding of optimal strategies to execute critical care collaborative programs between academic and community health centers facing public health emergencies during the COVID-19 pandemic, based on the experience of UCSDHS and several community hospitals (one US, two Mexican) in the US-Mexico border region. METHODS: After taking several preparatory steps, we developed a two-phase program that included 1) in-person activities to perform needs assessments, hands-on training and education, and morale building and 2) creation of a telemedicine-based (Tele-ICU) service for direct patient management and/or educational coaching experiences.Findings.A clinical and educational program between academic and community border hospitals was feasible, effective, and well received. CONCLUSION: We offer several policy-oriented recommendations steps for academic and community healthcare programs to build educational, collaborative partnerships to address COVID-19 and other cross-cultural, international public health emergencies.

2.
Ann Glob Health ; 87(1): 1, 2021 01 04.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1043783

ABSTRACT

Background: UC San Diego Health System (UCSDHS) is an academic medical center and integrated care network in the US-Mexico border area of California contiguous to the Mexican Northern Baja region. The COVID-19 pandemic deeply influenced UCSDHS activities as new public health challenges increasingly related to high population density, cross-border traffic, economic disparities, and interconnectedness between cross-border communities, which accelerated development of clinical collaborations between UCSDHS and several border community hospitals - one in the US, two in Mexico - as high volumes of severely ill patients overwhelmed hospitals. Objective: We describe the development, implementation, feasibility, and acceptance of a novel critical care support program in three community hospitals along the US-Mexico border. Methods: We created and instituted a hybrid critical care program involving: 1) in-person activities to perform needs assessments of equipment and supplies and hands-on training and education, and 2) creation of a telemedicine-based (Tele-ICU) service for direct patient management and/or consultative, education-based experiences. We collected performance metrics surrounding adherence to evidence-based practices and staff perceptions of critical care delivery. Findings: In-person intervention phase identified and filled gaps in equipment and supplies, and Tele-ICU program promoted adherence to evidence-based practices and improved staff confidence in caring for critically ill COVID-19 patients at each hospital. Conclusion: A collaborative, hybrid critical care program across academic and community centers is feasible and effective to address cross-cultural public health emergencies.


Subject(s)
Academic Medical Centers , COVID-19/therapy , Critical Care/methods , Hospitals, Community , Interdisciplinary Communication , Telemedicine , Algorithms , COVID-19/prevention & control , California , Critical Care/organization & administration , Equipment and Supplies, Hospital , Evidence-Based Medicine , Health Personnel/education , Humans , Infection Control/methods , Intensive Care Units , International Cooperation , Mexico , Nursing/methods , SARS-CoV-2 , Self Efficacy
3.
Telemed J E Health ; 27(6): 625-634, 2021 06.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-840939

ABSTRACT

Background: The authors draw upon their experience with a successful, enterprise-level, telemedicine program implementation to present a "How To" paradigm for other academic health centers that wish to rapidly deploy such a program in the setting of the COVID-19 pandemic. The advent of social distancing as essential for decreasing viral transmission has made it challenging to provide medical care. Telemedicine has the potential to medically undistance health care providers while maintaining the quality of care delivered and fulfilling the goal of social distancing. Methods: Rather than simply reporting enterprise telemedicine successes, the authors detail key telemedicine elements essential for rapid deployment of both an ambulatory and inpatient telemedicine solution. Such a deployment requires a multifaceted strategy: (1) determining the appropriateness of telemedicine use, (2) understanding the interface with the electronic health record, (3) knowing the equipment and resources needed, (4) developing a rapid rollout plan, (5) establishing a command center for post go-live support, (6) creating and disseminating reference materials and educational guides, (7) training clinicians, patients, and clinic schedulers, (8) considering billing and credentialing implications, (9) building a robust communications strategy, and (10) measuring key outcomes. Results: Initial results are reported, showing a telemedicine rate increase to 45.8% (58.6% video and telephone) in just the first week of rollout. Over a 5-month period, the enterprise has since conducted over 119,500 ambulatory telemedicine evaluations (a 1,000-fold rate increase from the pre-COVID-19 time period). Conclusion: This article is designed to offer a "How To" potential best practice approach for others wishing to quickly implement a telemedicine program during the COVID-19 pandemic.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Telemedicine , Humans , Inpatients , Pandemics , SARS-CoV-2
5.
EClinicalMedicine ; 26: 100504, 2020 Sep.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-720501

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Despite over 4 million cases of novel coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) in the United States, limited data exist including socioeconomic background and post-discharge outcomes for patients hospitalized with this disease. METHODS: In this case series, we identified patients with COVID-19 admitted to 3 Partners Healthcare hospitals in Boston, Massachusetts between March 7th, 2020, and March 30th, 2020. Patient characteristics, treatment strategies, and outcomes were determined. FINDINGS: A total of 247 patients hospitalized with COVID-19 were identified; the median age was 61 (interquartile range [IQR]: 50-76 years), 58% were men, 30% of Hispanic ethnicity, 21% enrolled in Medicaid, and 12% dual-enrolled Medicare/Medicaid. The median estimated household income was $66,701 [IQR: $50,336-$86,601]. Most patients were treated with hydroxychloroquine (72%), and statins (76%; newly initiated in 34%). During their admission, 103 patients (42%) required intensive care. At the end of the data collection period (June 24, 2020), 213 patients (86.2%) were discharged alive, 2 patients (0.8%) remain admitted, and 32 patients (13%) have died. Among those discharged alive (n = 213), 70 (32.9%) were discharged to a post-acute facility, 31 (14.6%) newly required supplemental oxygen, 19 (8.9%) newly required tube feeding, and 34 (16%) required new prescriptions for antipsychotics, benzodiazepines, methadone, or opioids. Over a median post-discharge follow-up of 80 days (IQR, 68-84), 22 patients (10.3%) were readmitted. INTERPRETATION: Patients hospitalized with COVID-19 are frequently of vulnerable socioeconomic status and often require intensive care. Patients who survive COVID-19 hospitalization have substantial need for post-acute services.

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