By Uday Bahal, Risk Manager – Medioh
A Safe Distance – Managing Remote Care Risk
How do providers manage patient safety when delivering care from a distance?
In traditional care settings, patient monitoring is conducted in controlled healthcare environments, such as clinics or hospitals. With remote care, patients are monitored via care tech located directly in their homes. This care delivery model comes with its own unique set of risks, which must be managed and mitigated to provide safe, effective remote care solutions.
Risk and Reward
In any form of care provision, various risks must be managed in the procedures, tools, and methods used in administering treatment to patients.
Clinical and in-person care delivery models come with their own unique environmental risks. In hospital settings, factors such as contagions, equipment functionality, facility conditions, staffing, and other factors must be carefully controlled to ensure that patients are getting safe care within these environments.
From power outages and medical supply shortages to security concerns and biohazards, clinical care sites strategically mitigate countless risks every day, all to provide quality care to patients.
Remote Care Risk
When delivering healthcare from a distance, risks range from technology functionality to patient usage of care tools to equipment reprocessing management (including cleaning, disinfection, and refurbishing practices). These product and process risks must be continuously identified, evaluated, and managed.
Once identified, each potential risk is analyzed, evaluated, controlled, and monitored through managed processes, statistical inspections, and periodic review throughout the entire remote care lifecycle. For every “what if”, there must be a compliant process to mitigate and prevent any issue that could result in unsafe or ineffective outcomes.
In terms of managing care technology risk, the primary goals are to ensure that the product is safe for patient use and effective to use, in that it performs its intended job. This includes anticipating and preventing harm from failure modes that can arise during the product lifecycle, including potential misuse of various tech and tools.
But, how do providers manage these unique RPM risks, while also ensuring their focus remains on care?
Delivering safe and effective remote care solutions at scale requires advanced capacities in technology, logistics and quality management. While this expertise may fall outside of the traditional healthcare vertical, leading health providers are partnering with operational support experts, who manage remote care technology and mitigate the risks a given solution creates.
From assessing user risk, to analyzing each and every process that impacts user safety and device effectiveness, these partners identify and create processes which ensure no potential issues affect patients.
Each risk management process created is unique to client needs compliant with international standards and national regulations, and is comprehensively tailored to correct each distinctive issue and ensure patient safety.
Digital health doesn’t have to be risky business. By combining the expertise of healthcare providers with logistics and technology specialists, delivering remote care at scale can be achieved without ever sacrificing quality and safety for volume.
Find out more about how Medioh creates safe, supportive RPM experiences for patients and providers.