Article | March 24, 2021 | Hicuity Health Introducing Virtual Sitter Services New Patient Observation Model Offers 30% Sitter Overhead Reduction, Expands Portfolio of Telemedicine Services Hicuity Health, the nation’s leading provider of high-acuity telemedicine services, announced the launch of its new virtual sitter service, a patient observation model designed to provide hospitals and health systems with a safe, cost-effective alternative to in-person sitters. The virtual sitter service delivers continuous technology-enabled patient monitoring with intervention steps and escalation paths that can be customized to the facility or health system to help prevent falls and promote patient safety. Studies show that virtualizing and scaling the in-person sitter function delivers the same level of fall prevention, with analysis documenting 30+% cost-saving opportunities. Traditional approaches to patient observation typically rely on in-person sitters at a 1:1 patient ratio. They are costly, resource-intensive, and administratively burdensome, with nursing management challenged with recruiting and maintaining trained sitter staffing and responding to fluctuations in patient census. Hicuity Health’s virtual sitter service leverages technology to scale the monitoring and reduce costs. It limits disruption to bedside nursing and staff by adjusting seamlessly to changes in patient census and helping to address patient activities that might otherwise result in a fall or other injury. The Hicuity Health sitter service enables ongoing surveillance of patients anywhere in the hospital who are identified as high risk. Monitoring staff watch constantly for risk events such as potential falls, delirium, pulling at lines, and elopement and utilize a facility-customized escalating response model to redirect the patient using audio and video interventions, contact a designated floor “runner” to intervene in person, or activate a distinct in-room alert that signals the need for immediate intervention by floor staff. Key benefits of Hicuity Health’s virtual sitter offering include: Reduced Staffing Overhead: Offers a 30% reduction in non-reimbursable staffing costs associated with 1:1 in-person sitting. Continuous, Focused Monitoring: Features trained monitoring staff, working from integrated operations centers with 24/7 nurse manager supervision and support. Responsive to Patient Census: Limits disruptions to bedside nursing and staff associated with being pulled off the floor to provide in-person sitting. Comprehensive Safety Program: Provides effective 24/7 patient observation of at-risk patients while promoting safety and delivering peace of mind to patients’ families. Flexible Technology Approach: Can utilize a Hicuity Health-defined turn-key technology solution or look to incorporate existing hospital assets. “Hicuity Health is proud to launch our virtual sitter service, our latest technology-enabled clinical service,” said Lou Silverman, CEO of Hicuity Health. “Like our tele-ICU, inpatient telemetry, and post-acute and smart device real-time patient monitoring services, virtual sitter delivers clinical effectiveness and efficiency to our clients to benefit the patients that we collectively serve.” Earlier this year, Hicuity Health introduced a new brand name to reflect the evolution of the organization’s technology-enabled inpatient telemedicine services offerings to a more expansive portfolio. The launch of virtual sitter services is one example of Hicuity Health’s commitment to finding more ways to extend the company’s virtual care expertise to support more hospitals, collaborate with more bedside teams, and care for more patients.