The COVID-19 pandemic has led to a rapid rise in the number of patients with breathing difficulties that require oxygen support to retain oxygen saturation in the blood. The Northampton General Hospital has two large oxygen tanks which supply ventilation machines, and patients are assigned to hospital wards to allow for the equal distribution of oxygen. The monitoring of the tanks is a manual process, requiring hospital staff to log into a system and physically collect each reading from the tanks. In the face of additional pressure brought on by the pandemic, a new system was required to free up resources and reduce unnecessary risk of error as information was reported.
RPA to the rescue for more effective uses of medical resources
Intelligent automation in healthcare can perform time-consuming tasks normally undertaken by frontline healthcare staff. It can mechanize repetitive, manual processes, such as monitoring and reporting in a streamlined, structured and autonomous way to limit the occurrence of errors, improve operational efficiencies in a medical setting and enable more effective uses of hospital resources, all while providing improved workflow management.
In collaboration with the hospital’s IT and Estates teams, as well as its partner, SBL, Automation Anywhere developed and implemented a software bot to increase the speed and frequency of reporting as well as reduce the risk of errors. The bot automates the process, extracting the data and calculating flow rates to monitor oxygen levels 24 hours a day without human intervention. Automating the collection of this data mitigates clinical risk within the hospital by arming incident teams with the data required to ensure demand is properly shared across the two tanks.
“Managing the supply and flow of oxygen has never been more important,” said Hugo Matias, CIO for Northampton General Hospital. “Automating the collection and sharing of this data has given valuable hours back and increased confidence that we can offer the best level of patient care.”
“Hospitals are at the very front line of this challenge, and intelligent automation helps offer a faster response, greater efficiency and more coordinated use of resources,” said Prince Kohli, CTO, Automation Anywhere. “We are proud to support Northampton General Hospital and the frontline workers as they address the unique challenges presented by the COVID-19 pandemic.”