The National Council of State Boards of Nursing recently unveiled a study with an alarming revelation: stress, burnout, and retirements are driving nurses out of the profession.
In fact, the past two years alone have seen approximately 100,000 registered nurses hang up their scrubs. Looking to the future, the horizon looks rather bleak: projections indicate that approximately 610,388 nurses are on the verge of exiting the profession by 2027.
In the labyrinth of challenges plaguing the healthcare industry, this escalating nursing shortage is casting a long shadow over patient safety and patient experience. The two escape routes out of this crisis involve either a significant increase in the number of qualified nurses or a substantial decrease in demand.
For the warriors who choose to stay in the profession, burnout isn't a buzzword, it's a reality. In a proactive response to this dire scenario, hospitals are aggressively pursuing virtual clinical observation services.
Their goal? To meet demand, help lighten the staff's workload, trim costs, and boost patient safety, all while turbocharging efficiency.
Even with adequate nurse staff levels, a shocking estimate reveals that nearly 80% of inpatient falls remain unnoticed. Not only do each of these accidents cost, on average, approximately $14,000, they cause untold distress to patients and their families.
However, companies that have delivered more traditional patient observation solutions are stepping up their game, offering tangible results through new virtual clinical observation solutions.
KLAS Survey Highlights Virtual Clinical Observation Successes
Recent customer feedback reflects the effectiveness and user satisfaction of MedSitter, a leading solution for clinicians to effectively manage and monitor patients with a 10:1 virtual observation ratio. According to an assessment by KLAS, 100% of surveyed customers indicated they were satisfied with their purchase and would buy the product again. Such high satisfaction rates underscore the product's value and potential for future growth.
Medsitter’s customers gave them credit for enhanced patient safety, fewer patient falls, less reliance on one-to-one observers, reduced staff workload, and substantial cost savings. These positive ripples echo the effectiveness of the MedSitter solution in tackling some of the most daunting challenges in healthcare facilities.
“We have seen a reduction in the number of falls and a reduction in the need for one-to-one, in-person sitters. Those reductions have trickled into successful financial and operational outcomes. MedSitter has improved our patient safety.” said a Director from a MedSitter client account.
A nurse within a MedSitter client account explained, “MedSitter is tapping into a much-needed market. We don’t have to pull providers off the floor to make sure that patients aren’t getting up without assistance and so forth. The observers can pull up the screens, interact with the patients, and send help to give the patients whatever they need. That greatly decreases the burden on our staff.”
The KLAS report states that MedSitter achieved flawless scores in several performance metrics, including promise-keeping, repurchase probability, and pricing clarity. It also hit the high notes in critical areas like product reliability, recommendation likelihood, ease of use, executive involvement, and support quality.
The virtues of virtual observation aren’t just found in numbers or praise—it's embodied in the real, positive change that MedSitter brings to healthcare facilities.
Each reduction in patient falls, each alleviation of staff burden, and each cost saved contributes to a safer, more productive, and more human-centric healthcare environment.
A Revolutionary Response to the Nursing Shortage
Rather than boosting nurse numbers or cutting demand, new alternatives like virtual clinical observation are poised to reshape the healthcare landscape.
These technologies are not temporary fixes. Instead, they represent a seismic shift in healthcare delivery, easing staff burden, curbing costs, and strengthening patient safety.
Importantly, virtual clinical observation does not replace healthcare professionals. Instead, it's a strategy to empower them, offering a digital resource when human capacity is limited. Now one observer can efficiently supervise up to 10 people at once.Although challenging, the nursing shortage crisis might be the catalyst that propels the healthcare sector into a new era—an era in which the fusion of technology and human ingenuity paves the way for better patient care, less burnout for our healthcare heroes, and a more resilient healthcare system.
Holly Miller, Collette Health President, is dedicated to implementing virtual care solutions that focus on patient impact and clinician experience.