GE Healthcare introduced a new software solution to support clinicians and health systems in the treatment of COVID-19 patients. The company is bringing its Mural Virtual Care Solution, which is designed to give hospitals a broad view across their ventilated patient population and help identify patients at risk of deterioration, to the highly secure and trusted Microsoft Azure cloud platform. This is the latest step in the ongoing collaboration between GE Healthcare and Microsoft.
As more patients enter health systems for COVID-19 treatment, hospitals face increased demands on clinical resources. The Mural Virtual Care Solution 1,2 helps ease this pressure by enabling clinical surveillance of intensive care unit (ICU) patients – including those on mechanical ventilation – in a central place, giving a comprehensive view of each patient’s data across the hospital network.
“As both large and small hospitals treat the growing number of COVID-19 patients, the strain on healthcare providers and systems will be unprecedented,” said GE Healthcare President and CEO Kieran Murphy. “Not only is GE Healthcare providing critically important medical devices to address this global challenge, but we are also rapidly scaling technologies to aid clinicians in delivering safe, effective and efficient care. We are excited to have a partner like Microsoft to help us arm clinicians with the software tools they need.”
A Mural installation across a 100-bed multi-site ICU network is monitored by three senior nurses and two intensivists around the clock. With a potential shortage of intensivists and bedside caregivers, Mural supports these teams by enabling additional oversight of patients across the hospital network. Bringing together near real-time data3 from ventilators, patient monitoring systems, electronic medical records, labs and other systems, Mural allows one clinician to monitor several patients at once, supplementing existing monitoring devices in patients’ rooms. Remote surveillance may also reduce clinicians’ exposure to COVID-19, while maintaining a broad view of patients across the hospital.
“Now more than ever we need to manage a greater number of ventilated patients with limited resources. Mural Virtual Care on Microsoft Azure allows for remote management and surveillance of ventilated patients at scale,” said Microsoft Global Chief Medical Officer Dr. David Rhew.
In addition to real-time remote management, Mural also enables health systems to activate care protocols relevant to treating COVID-19 patients and help caregivers ensure those protocols are being followed. Customized with hospitals to provide data and calculations based on their care protocols, Mural can also help identify patients needing intervention. This includes ventilation and lung injury management for patients on extended mechanical ventilation support. The technology can be used by hospitals or health systems of any size, and Oregon Health & Science University (OHSU), for example, has deployed the solution.
“Facing the daunting outlook of a COVID-19 surge, it is imperative that I and my fellow healthcare workers use virtual ICU technology to safely monitor and care for our sickest patients while preserving PPE,” said Matthias Merkel, M.D., Ph.D., OHSU’s Chief Medical Capacity Officer, Vice Chair of Critical Care Medicine, and Professor of Anesthesiology and Perioperative Medicine. “Remaining closely connected and supported through technology enables us to progress our patients’ care across a geographic distance that we would otherwise be unable to manage.”
About GE Healthcare
GE Healthcare is the $16.7 billion healthcare business of. As a leading global medical technology and digital solutions innovator, GE Healthcare enables clinicians to make faster, more informed decisions through intelligent devices, data analytics, applications and services, supported by its Edison intelligence platform. With over 100 years of healthcare industry experience and around 50,000 employees globally, the company operates at the center of an ecosystem working toward precision health, digitizing healthcare, helping drive productivity and improve outcomes for patients, providers, health systems and researchers around the world.