PocketJemobile thermal printers provide a better alternative to inkjets for the Midwest Palliative & Hospice CareCenter.

Midwest Palliative & Hospice CareCenter serves more than 4,000 patients per year in their homes, extended care and inpatient hospice facilities. As a vital part of a large geographic community, Midwest CareCenter has delivered palliative and hospice care to the patient for more than three decades. With a large clinical workforce and complex route considerations, mobile printing has become a critical component to the Midwest CareCenter’s compliance, patient safety and education process.

Business Problem
With a clinical and interdisciplinary staff of nearly 300 professionals, Midwest Palliative & Hospice CareCenter delivers medical and hospice care services to a broad network of patients in their homes, extended care and inpatient hospice facilities. In recent years, the home healthcare industry has been faced with logistical and records transfer challenges brought on by a number of new regulations.

When reviewing the CMS (Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services) Conditions of Participation mandating that hospice and home health care workers leave a detailed medication list at the patient’s residence, Midwest CareCenter realized it needed to integrate its EMR system with other technologies to help improve the efficiency of its current process. The challenge was to provide accurate, hard copy documentation of continually changing data, to the patient – and do it at the time of the visit.

On the heels of this mandate, new Electronic Health Records (EHR) benchmarks and “meaningful use” requirements were released by CMS. Meaningful use guidelines promote higher standards in EHR integration and strive to further insure patient safety, but posed the second greatest field challenge to Midwest CareCenter administrators: How to connect hundreds of field clinicians, social workers and physicians with individualized safety, drug interaction and educational materials, and enable them to output this data in real time for the homebound patient.

Business Solution
Within months of reviewing the CMS regulation, Midwest CareCenter supplied its clinical staff including nurses, physicians and social workers with the PocketJet® mobile printer. The clinician’s tablet or mobile device can interface via USB with the lightweight, high-speed printer, which can be carried easily in a field bag*. Immediately upon implementation, clinicians were providing clear, current, printed medication documentation to the in-home patient.

In response to the new electronic health records mandates, Midwest CareCenter further integrated its IT system with field computers – creating a truly mobile extension of the main facility. As a result, clinicians were now able to generate highly personalized patient instructions and important drug interaction data before leaving the patient’s residence. In addition, the printed documents served as a written reference for family and other care givers.

Although the administrators were pleased that the CMS compliance requirements were met, they have realized even greater benefits. “We’re providing our patients and their families with important information regarding ongoing comfort and safety, while spending more time attending to their immediate needs.”
– Yasmin Clinton, Midwest Palliative & Hospice CareCenter

Moving forward, Midwest CareCenter plans to integrate the PocketJet into a new document management and electronic forms system. It is also investigating its application as part of the admissions process.

Three years after deployment, the PocketJet mobile printer has done more than resolve the logistical and compliance issues for which it was adopted. Staff agree that it has measurably helped increase field efficiency, improved patient education and further help ensure patient safety. Mobile printing enables clinicians to convey complex information to family caregivers during emotionally-charged situations.

While the printer’s lightweight, durable design and long life were paramount in the initial selection process, administrators agreed that the long battery life, super fast print speed, and absolute reliability have made it easy for clinicians to adopt the technology.

Challenge
Find a lightweight mobile printing solution with long battery life and absolute field reliability to support busy medical professionals.

Solution
Brother  PocketJet 7 full-page mobile thermal printers with Li-ion battery and Brother thermal paper.

Download the full case study here.

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