Health First Enhances Caring, Compassion and Connections with Families Using Vocera Ease


Vocera Communications, Inc., a recognized leader in clinical communication and workflow solutions, announced that Health First deployed the Vocera Ease application in its four Central Florida hospitals to improve patient and family communication. The cloud-based application enables nurses and other healthcare professionals to send secure texts, photos and video updates to a patient’s designated loved ones during a hospital stay or medical procedure. Family members and friends can respond to updates with emojis, giving immediate feedback and support to caregivers.

Between April 15 and Oct. 2 of this year, Health First’s Holmes Regional Medical Center sent nearly 19,000 secure messages to patients’ loved ones across 49 states. In turn, these families and friends responded to care teams with more than 26,000 emojis, including 13,000 thumbs-ups, 8,000 hearts and 4,500 prayer hands.

“Even during the best of times, a hospital stay can cause anxiety for patients and their families. Not only are they dealing with a medical procedure, but they often can’t be together in the hospital. Seeing a reassuring picture of grandma or a newborn family member provides needed comfort,” said Mark Rosenbloom, M.D., FACS, CPE, Vice President of Clinical Transformation at Health First. “We are dedicated to providing the best possible healthcare experience and hope having access to the Vocera Ease application will help our patients’ and their loved ones feel cared for and have more peace of mind.”

Health First can track patient and family experience in real-time using the customizable in-app survey. Based on operating room survey results between April and October 2020 at Holmes Regional Medical Center, 97% of respondents indicated the hospital demonstrated compassion and caring by offering the Ease app to patients and families. Additionally, 97% said they would recommend the hospital to others based on their experience with the application.

In addition to Holmes Regional Medical Center, Health First’s Cape Canaveral Hospital, Health First’s Palm Bay Hospital and Health First’s Viera Hospital use the Ease application in operating rooms (OR) and newborn intensive care units (NICU). The mobile solution connects families and loved ones, no matter where they are, and helps support social distancing measures required by COVID-19 protocols.

Care teams can send secure updates from the OR, NICU, ICU, radiology, the emergency room, and other inpatient and outpatient areas The HIPAA-compliant messages, pictures and videos disappear 60 seconds after being viewed, and nothing is saved on the mobile device, providing an additional layer of security and privacy. The Ease application also provides secure two-way video conferencing between patients’ families and care teams.

“We are proud to support Health First, a long-time Vocera customer, as it continues improving communication and the healthcare experience for all,” said Brent Lang, Chairman and CEO of Vocera. “Restoring human connections, and helping improve the lives of patients, families and care teams is part of our core mission, which is so critical during a time when many of us can feel disconnected.”

About Health First

Founded in 1995, Health First is Brevard County’s not-for-profit, community healthcare system. The fully integrated delivery network (IDN) includes health insurance plans, hospitals, a multi-specialty medical group, and outpatient and wellness services. As a locally owned, not-for-profit organization, Health First is committed to investing in our community. In 2019, Health First provided more than $180 million in community support.

About Vocera

The mission of Vocera Communications, Inc. is to simplify and improve the lives of healthcare professionals, patients, and families while enabling hospitals to enhance quality of care and operational efficiency and humanize the healthcare experience. In 2000, when the company was founded, we began to forever change the way care teams communicate. Today, Vocera offers the leading platform for improving clinical communication and workflow. More than 2,100 facilities worldwide, including nearly 1,700 hospitals and healthcare facilities, have selected our solutions. Care team members use our solutions to communicate and collaborate with co-workers by securely texting or calling, and to be notified of important alerts and alarms. They can choose the right device for their role or task, including smartphones or our hands-free, wearable Vocera Smartbadge and Vocera Badge. They can create a richer, more human connection for patients and their loved ones before, during, and after care using Vocera Ease applications. Interoperability between the Vocera Platform and more than 150 clinical and operational systems helps reduce alarm fatigue; speed up staff response times; and improve patient care, safety, and experience. In addition to healthcare, Vocera solutions are found in luxury hotels, aged care facilities, retail stores, schools, power facilities, libraries, and more. Vocera solutions make mobile workers safer and more effective by enabling them to connect instantly with other people and access resources or information quickly. Vocera has made the list of Forbes 100 Most Trustworthy Companies in America.