Faced with declining budgets, hospitals and trauma centers feel increasing pressure to find innovative solutions that allocate scarce resources effectively while improving quality of care. mHealth technology holds untapped potential to streamline institutional procedures, permitting better care at a lower cost.
In the clinical setting, mHealth technology can achieve quantifiable cost and clinical outcome benefits by streamlining institutional procedures to save time and improve clinician productivity - allowing for enhanced patient-physician interaction that leads to better clinical outcomes.
HITLAB teamed with University of Miami to evaluate MobileCARE, a smartphone-based electronic health record (EHR) and billing system designed to improve the efficiency and quality of care in hospitals, trauma centers, and military health settings. MobileCARE was developed with the support of the Department of Defense with the vision of using a single, integrated recording system to raise the standard of care and improve decision-making in trauma and critical care for the Army’s Forward Surgical Teams (FSTs) before and during deployments. In the setting of a level 1 trauma center at University of Miami, MobileCare integrates the multitude of electronic and paper-based recording systems used in intensive care units, allowing for more efficient and effective documentation of patient care and billing practices.
Capturing direct and indirect costs and benefits of MobileCARE use at the University of Miami trauma center, HITLAB designed a mixed-methods economic evaluation of the MobileCARE's capacity to document and reference patient medical records while improving quality of clinical care. These costs and benefits have the potential to influence short- and long-term patient outcomes beyond trauma intensive care units. HITLAB’s evaluation provides the MobileCARE team with the insights they need to diffuse a technology that could replace multi-channel systems across hospital and care systems, thus saving money and increasing care efficiency.
Findings from HITLAB's economic evaluation of MobileCARE
Analysis of cost and clinical outcome data from the University of Miami trauma center pre- and post- MobileCARE implementation show notable improvements in clinical outcomes following the launch of MobileCARE. Mortality rates in the trauma unit declined by 2% and average Length of Stay (LOS) was reduced by 1.73 days per patient. A cost-utility analysis found an increase in patient quality of life days (QALD) of 2.8 days per patient.