Enabling hospital-level care in patient's homes
Accelerate the rollout of a ground-breaking remote healthcare monitoring service.
Quro Medical was developing a pioneering ‘Hospital-at-Home’ service, which would enable patients to be safely discharged from hospital sooner than would otherwise have been possible. To achieve this, each patient would wear a sensor to record their vital signs, with the data monitored 24×7 by Quro’s clinical team. If a patient showed indications of deterioration, clinicians would contact them to ensure they received the right care.
The service would enable patients to recover in the comfort of their own homes, while freeing up clinician time and hospital beds for those needing urgent care. The service was in the early stages of development ahead of a planned launch in South Africa, when the world was hit by Covid-19. This meant a spike in hospital bed demand for Covid-19 patients with serious symptoms, coupled with the need to minimise the number of other patients attending hospital.
Quro knew its service could be a game-changer in the fight against the disease. A quick launch would facilitate the release of hospital beds, while enabling Covid-19 patients with mild symptoms to self-isolate at home, under the remote care of its clinicians.
To dramatically accelerate its rollout schedule, Quro needed a software development team to build the patient-monitoring application for clinicians.
We designed and built a secure and easy-to-use cloud application to enable authorised clinicians to remotely monitor the vital signs of their patients.
We quickly put in place a team to build the application that would enable Quro Medical to launch Hospital-at-Home. This involved designing a cloud app to handle the high volumes of data being collected by the sensors. We put robust security in place, to ensure only authorised clinicians could access patient information.
The other key element was a user experience to enable clinicians to monitor large numbers of patients effectively. Working closely with Quro for clinical input, we displayed the data in chart formats the doctors would be familiar with. We added visual aids to help with at-a-glance interpretation, such as highlighting expected ranges and anomalous data and displaying grid squares on the ECG graphs.
Hospital-at-Home launched ahead of schedule and is already enabling patients to safely return home or remain at home, supported by hospital-level care.
Our patient-monitoring application MVP was ready within four weeks. Following extensive testing, Quro was able to onboard the first patients just 10 weeks after we started. This meant it had brought forward the launch by several months and was in time to make a difference in the fight against Covid-19.
The service is now being used by a large number of Covid-19 and non-Covid-19 patients, enabling them to remain at home safely. Most importantly, the efficacy of the remote monitoring model has been proven. On a number of occasions, the system has enabled clinicians to identify deteriorating patients, and consequently (re-)admit them to hospital to receive the necessary care.
The early success of Hospital-at-Home has opened doors for Quro Medical to expand it to other healthcare providers in South Africa, to support them both during the pandemic, and afterwards.
Rob Cornish, Chief Scientific Officer at Quro Medical, concludes: “Softwire was a fantastic partner: what stood out was, firstly, their ability to ramp up a fully productive team within an exceptionally short timescale, which was critical in enabling us to accelerate the launch. Secondly, there was the passion of the team members, who clearly love their work and genuinely wanted to do something meaningful that impacts people’s lives.”