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Retirement Community Gains Insight From RTLS

Technology from Intelligent InSites and CenTrak allows Rockhill Mennonite to know the locations of its residents and employees in real time, enabling faster responses to calls for assistance, as well as documentation of patients' activities and care.
By Claire Swedberg
Other systems have been integrated onto the InSites platform, Klassen says, including the paging system, wireless PDA communications and bedside devices with cords that residents can pull in order to call for help instead of having to press the CenTrak tag's button.

When Rockhill Mennonite added the system to its 90-bed nursing-home facility last month, it also linked the system to nurse call lights, so when a resident in his or her room presses an alert button or tugs on a pull cord, the InSites software receives that resident and room number data, and causes a light above the door of that person's room to illuminate. The staff is also alerted via their pagers or PDAs, and the alert continues to be sent until an employee indicates he or she has responded to the call. If no one responds, the alerts are then issued to management.

Rockhill Mennonite is still exploring ways in which the data can be used, says Ron Sawatsky, the organization's CEO. Thus far, by tracking its staff, the compound is able to create accurate records of the response time for alert messages, as well as track the timeliness and frequency of staff visits with a resident, and assess productivity in delivery care. The system can be used to help locate staff members in real time, he adds, and also makes it faster for workers to locate patients.

"Staff have commented on their sense of improved productivity after implementing the InSites solution," Sawatsky states. "That equates to additional time that can be redirected towards resident care. It allows us to relax."

The system also enables Rockhill Mennonite to show residents' family members what their loved ones' activities have been, since it tracks when each resident goes to any specific room—such as the activity or lunch room. If, for instance, a resident says she has not left her room for days, the staff can provide a record detailing exactly where and when she went, or confirm that she, indeed, did not leave her room during that span of time.

Because the system is Web-based, Sawatsky says he can also view data from the system on his iPhone, by logging into the system and entering the proper password.

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