Illinois health system pilots virtual nursing

OSF HealthCare, based in Peoria, Ill., is testing virtual nursing in three medical-surgical units.

The virtual nursing pilot is currently serving approximately 75 patients at OSF's facility, Saint Francis Medical Center in Peoria, according to an Oct. 24 news release from OSF. 

The pilot program is experimenting with two distinct methods — one that utilizes installed technology on patient room TVs that can facilitate an audio-visual connection with the patient, while the other provides a tablet for the patient's use.

The technology platform to be employed by the virtual nursing pilot has not yet been finalized, but OSF says patient feedback has been positive. 

"Patients certainly have expressed that they have had a good experience with the virtual nurse both with the tablet as well as with the installed technology in the room," Brandi Clark, vice president of digital care at OSF, said in the news release. "A real benefit to the installed technology for the bedside nurses is that it requires no work from them to bring that technology into the room to the patient."

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