How Mount Sinai's IT team is responding to COVID-19

At New York City-based Mount Sinai Health System, the IT team has been updating the EHR to support data gathering and new lab testing.

Bruce Darrow, MD, PhD, senior vice president of IT and deputy CIO at Mount Sinai, has been spearheading these initiatives. At the epicenter of the COVID-19 outbreak, Mount Sinai is leveraging telehealth services, remote monitoring tools and data science team algorithms.

Below, Dr. Darrow describes the tech Mount Sinai is using to fight COVID-19 as well as how the IT team remains motivated during the pandemic.

Editor's note: Responses have been lightly edited for clarity and length.

Question: What virtual tools are you using to treat patients? How are patients and physicians responding?
Dr. Bruce Darrow:
Mount Sinai is using telehealth visits and remote monitoring tools for our patients at home, video remote consults to our emergency departments and inpatient units, and on-demand urgent video visits for our staff and for the general public. Both uptake and satisfaction have been quite good.


Q: How have you altered your EHR or other technology?
BD:
Mount Sinai made several incremental EHR changes to support new laboratory tests and ordering, standardized order sets, reporting and dashboarding, and data streams for research.

We are also implementing data science team algorithms to identify patients who are at risk for clinical deterioration over the next 12 hours, and, conversely, improving with good likelihood to meet discharge criteria within the next 72 hours.


Q: How are you keeping your staff motivated during this time?
BD:
The IT staff at Mount Sinai has been incredibly hard working, responsive and motivated because there’s a clear recognition that our efforts are saving lives and putting our clinicians in the best position to take care of sick patients under difficult conditions.

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Viewpoint: Once viewed as tech burden, EHRs may now be considered an asset in coronavirus pandemic
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