Eliminating Distractions, Improving Patient Safety

Introducing RapidPair, the latest enhancement to RapidConnect secure messaging solution.

According to a 2000 report from The Institute of Medicine, To Err is Human, experts estimated that as many as 98,000 people died in any given year from medical errors that occur in hospitals. In 2016, after analyzing medical death rate data over an eight-year period, Johns Hopkins patient safety experts published that more than 250,000 deaths per year are due to medical error in the U.S. In 2013, distraction from smartphones and other mobile devices was identified for the first time as one of the top 10 health technology hazards by ECRI Institute.

Hospitals and physicians recognize that electronic devices in clinical care environments have exploded over the last 10 years, resulting in an unprecedented level of distractions. They are committed to minimizing those distractions, especially in operating rooms and other procedure related areas, which are at especially high risk for interruption and distraction-related errors.

RapidConnect by MDInterconnect has risen to that challenge with the introduction of its latest feature, RapidPair. RapidPair enables physicians to quickly and easily allow a “proxy” to review and respond to secure messages on their behalf when they are otherwise occupied.
Imagine the following scenario.

RapidPair image 150A physician is in the operating room, performing a life-saving surgery. A message comes in to their mobile device. They know that a message has come in, but can they afford to stop mid-surgery to check that message and/or respond directly? Of course not!

Can they even afford to pause long enough to instruct the circulating nurse how to get into their personal device, to find the app and open the message using their personal PIN? Not really.

Other solutions on the market today claim to offer “proxy” or “delegation” type capabilities to address this problem, but create even more distractions by requiring multiple, sometimes complicated and inefficient steps be taken by the physician and/or circulating nurse.

If a so-called “solution” is too time-consuming, complicated or dangerous to use, how likely are physicians and/or hospitals to actually use it? Hospitals and physicians want a solution they can trust to make their job easier, and one that certainly doesn’t jeopardize patient care.

MD Interconnect took all of these concerns into consideration when developing RapidPair, and designed it to accomplish the following:

  • Require minimal disruption to a physician’s normal workflow
  • Ensure process does not rely on clinicians resetting status each time they 
enter procedure area
  • Ensure that on-call physicians can be reached at all times
  • Eliminate the need for “proxies” to access a physician’s personal device
  • Ensure rapid, secure communication

With RapidPair, the physician simply asks the proxy (i.e. circulating nurse) to check the incoming message. The proxy does this through any computer (not the physician’s personal device) by signing into their own RapidConnect account and accessing the RapidPair function. With minimal disruption to the patient or procedure, they can immediately see the message and respond based on the physician’s instructions. Each proxy can pair up to 10 devices at one time. The clinician is not required to change any settings or status on their own device.

RapidPair minimizes:

  • Distractions in the operating room and/or during other patient interactions
  • Changes to physician behavior and/or workflow
  • Security concerns, with the messaging platform itself and/or physicians’ 

RapidConnect gives physicians the flexibility they want, to choose the options that work best for them, and thus provide the best patient care possible. RapidPair complements other features like QuickCover, Read Notifications, Shift- based Roles, Message Routing, etc. allowing widespread adoption by clinicians enabling a system to implement a secure, team-based, collaborative and effective approach to patient care.

Creating a physician-driven solution to deliver more efficient and effective patient care

In this interview with co-founder and Chief Medical Officer Dr. David Hoover, we share how his personal experience drove the creation of RapidConnect and how that experience sets this secure messaging solution apart from others in the healthcare market.

In 2014, David set out to respond to a critical challenge that physicians face, and one that he had experienced directly; connecting the right physicians at the right time, to ensure the best possible outcome for patients.

As a pediatric surgeon, David relies on physician referrals to connect with patients in need of his specialized services. He realized that outpatient-based physicians (pediatricians, internists, etc.) had a hard time reaching specialists (like him) based on a confusing list of various numbers and instructions depending on day of the week, time of day, secondary contacts (such as a PA) and other variables. It was frustrating to say the least and was far from efficient and/or effective.

To address the problem, hospital administrators would often add yet another 800 number and hire additional call center staff members to handle the calls. “This was obviously not a satisfactory solution to improving patient care in the long-term. I just knew there had to be a better way.”

David decided to take on the challenge directly, and began by researching existing solutions on the market. “I found a few available options, but none of them allowed users to create physician preferences based on how they wanted to be contacted and/or how they worked.” David knew the ideal solution would help users connect with the right provider at the right time, in a streamlined manner that worked for all parties involved.

David created MDInterconnect and worked with his software development team to prototype what he thought that solution should look like. He pulled from his own extensive healthcare experience and understanding of how physicians and hospitals operate. He also leveraged input from other physicians, hospital administration, call centers, etc. to address the nuances for both in-patient and outpatient providers. “We really gave thought to a number of possible scenarios and how we would account for each one in our software.”

“We were very in touch with what would make this work for physicians and knew that we needed to make the technology easily accessible and user friendly. Our flagship product, RapidConnect, was built on that philosophy and continues to evolve with that in mind.”

While other solutions are technology driven, RapidConnect is the only solution on the market that is truly physician driven.  But, that is not the only thing that sets it apart. Secure messaging, call center components, ease-of-use, and delegation capabilities are just a few of the unique elements it has to offer. RapidConnect even offers built-in call scheduling functionality but also integrates with other industry-leading call scheduling solutions, such as Lightning Bolt.

David set out to improve communication between providers and to ensure the best possible patient care when they need it most.

“Better communication creates efficiencies around managing a patient’s care as well as the transition from one care setting to another. Treatments and meds are administered more quickly and effectively. The care team is engaged more collaboratively. The patient is managed more successfully. I wanted a solution that would lead to these outcomes.”