Heart to Heart Hospice Implements Digital Systems that Enable Continued Quality Care for Patients
Heart to Heart’s digital transformation and how it helps meet the challenges of the ongoing pandemic is featured in the August issue of Healthcare Global
Plano, Texas – Heart to Heart Hospice, a leader in hospice services since 2003, is using technology to help provide quality end-of-life care to more patients and families amid the ongoing pandemic and the unique healthcare-related challenges it continues to present.
The way Heart to Heart’s digital transformation is helping patients in their care live life to the fullest is featured in the August issue of Healthcare Global, the “digital community” for the global hospital & healthcare industry.
“Hospice care, which is based on compassionate, person-centered care, has faced unprecedented disruptions during the past two years,” said Kelly Mitchell, Chief Executive Officer of Heart to Heart Hospice. “Social distancing restrictions and the necessity of wearing PPE have required major adjustments to enable us to continue providing the reassuring care that our patients and families need.”
The hospice provider began a digital transformation in 2016 which has positioned it to overcome many of these challenges. “Over the past five years, we have basically replaced the entire infrastructure in order to support our business and technology vision for the care of our patients and families,” said Russ Abercrombie, Chief Information Officer for Heart to Heart. During that timeframe, Heart to Heart has also experienced major growth – from 29 sites to more than 50 – significantly increasing the number of patients it serves.
Abercrombie said a video conference and mobile client solution has enabled Heart to Heart to bridge a serious communication gap and continue coordination of its patient care throughout the pandemic. In addition, virtual hospice admissions and telehealth services have allowed all members of the hospice care team to remain available to patients and families.
Replacing paper systems with electronic health records (EMRs), along with an Artificial Intelligence-based system that tracks patient care in real time, has proved another significant part of the project, driven by the clinical department, headed by Heather Lumsdon, Chief Clinical Officer. The ability to chart the progression of an illness is perhaps even more important in palliative care, said Lumsdon, who noted that better, more timely data translates to better, more timely care. “Part of our mission is to be present [with the patient] at the most important time,” she said.
About Heart to Heart Hospice
Heart to Heart Hospice, founded in 2003, is one of the largest private providers of hospice care in the United States. Headquartered in the Dallas-Fort Worth Metroplex, Heart to Heart provides a broad range of hospice services to patients with life-limiting illnesses across 52 locations in Texas, Michigan, and Indiana. At Heart to Heart, we understand both the physical and emotional challenges for our patients and their loved ones and our compassionate care team is committed to providing them with what they need most: comfort and dignity. Learn more about Heart to Heart Hospice.