Regions Hospital, Northwestern, Mass General pilot remote monitoring ventilators 

St. Paul, Minn.-based Regions Hospital is testing a new ventilator developed by Medtronic that allows clinicians to monitor the devices without physically entering COVID-19 patient rooms, according to local NBC affiliate KARE

Other hospitals involved in the pilot include Chicago-based Northwestern Memorial Hospital, Boston-based Massachusetts General Hospital, University of Alabama Birmingham Health System and Chattanooga, Tenn.-based Erlanger Health System. 

Regions Hospital and Medtronic launched the first remote monitoring capability for the tech company's Puritan Bennett 980 ventilator on April 16. With the software update, hospital staff can access the ventilator and adjust settings via laptop from anywhere in the facility. 

The remote monitoring ventilators have reduced the number of times staff members go in and out of COVID-19 patient rooms by almost 50 percent. Based on Regions Hospital's COVID-19 patients, staff had about 450 fewer in-room visits for the average two-week duration of ventilator use as of April 27, Kelly Sullivan, respiratory care services supervisor at the hospital, told KARE

Forty of the hospital's 57 ventilators have the remote capability, and Medtronic plans to globally deploy the software update that enables remote access for its Puritan Bennett 980 ventilators on May 1, according to the report. 

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