Caring for Kids in the CVICU

ImageAs a pediatric cardiac intensivist, I start each morning by doing my rounds in the cardiovascular intensive care unit (CVICU) at the Children’s of Alabama in Birmingham. It doesn’t sound out of the norm, except every other week I’m handling it from 500 miles away at my home office in St. Louis, Missouri from an app on my phone. While I spend the other weeks in Birmingham on-site at the hospital, technology has given me the flexibility to live remotely while still ensuring the highest level of care for my patients.

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Putting Patients at the Heart of the Cardiology Service Line

shutterstock_120955669-390x285Mobility is essential to cardiac physicians. They don’t sit behind a desk all day, but rather are moving back and forth between their clinic, their office and around the hospital. Mobile health products allow cardiac physicians to maintain their access to critical clinical data even while in motion. Accessing data on a handheld device regardless of location is transformational, as it means the cardiac physician doesn’t need to be at the patient bedside to make a timely care decision.

However, mobility in the cardiology service line isn’t ultimately about cardiac physicians – it’s about the patient. When we think about the cardiology service line, we don’t think about the cardiology specialty – we think about a patient with a heart condition. But it’s also important that we look beyond the heart to view our patients comprehensively. Does the patient have any other conditions? What medications are we prescribing?

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