2021: When Telemedicine Became Medicine

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2021: When Telemedicine Became Medicine

The year 2021 was another year of considerable progress for Hicuity Health.

The highlights: ■

In our sixteenth year as a company, we retain the energy and vitality of a start-up and combine that with our status as a leader and eminence grise in the industry.

Our clinical team, a talented, committed, united, and expert group, continued to prove that quality individuals make quality teams, and quality teams can accomplish great things – even in challenging times.

During 2021, our clinical team cared for more than 120,000 patients, addressed nearly 1.3 million clinical interventions and collectively delivered more than 9 million patient monitoring hours. In partnership with our colleagues at the bedside, our clinical team leveraged knowledge, experience and resourcefulness to deliver daily miracles. We were THERE for our patients and clients – every single day and night.

We expanded on our sector leadership as the largest provider of tele-ICU services in the nation.

Likewise, we expanded on our sector leadership as the largest provider of remote inpatient telemetry services in the nation.

We completed the precision roll out of our initial Shared Services service clients who are now able to combine Hicuity Health’s technology, clinical, and operational expertise with their own in a highly customized service offering.

Virtual Nursing and Virtual Sitter were added to our roster of service lines, continuing our tradition of delivering outstanding service and results in complex environments.

During 2021, we introduced service in our 30th state and our contracted bed count grew to over 3000.

We continued to reinvest in our business and our commitment to our patients, our clients and our team. In particular, adding additional features and functionality to our proprietary HUB workflow management software continued to reaffirm its stature as, from our somewhat biased view, the best in the business.

We avoided the dizzying and draining booms and busts experienced by consumer-facing telemedicine models during the year. We were “up and to the right”, as the expression goes, across our entire operation. Focused, steady, and methodical – every step of the way.

The opportunity to serve patients, like-minded hospital partners, and dedicated bedside teams continues to be a privilege and an honor. We are confident in our mission, proud of our accomplishments, and appreciative of the daily opportunity to make a difference. Enjoy our 2021 retrospective.

Lou Silverman Chairman and CEO



A Timely Solution: How Virtual Nursing Helps Address Nursing Shortages

Marcia Murphy, VP of Clinical Operations and Nursing

Concerns about clinician staffing and the future availability of highly-trained physicians and nurses have been on the strategic dashboard of every attentive health system and healthcare leader for years. Staffing shortages have been predicted repeatedly and consistently, as healthcare leaders modeled the anticipated impacts of long-term trends such as increasing healthcare demands due to an aging population, the projected rate of clinician retirement, increasing turnover, and the rate at which new providers and nurses are being trained. The 2021 NSI National Health Care Retention & RN Staffing Report documented, based on data gathered in the first quarter of 2021, 35.8% of hospitals reported an RN vacancy rate above 10%. In addition, RN turnover rose in 2020 to 18.7%, an increase of almost 2 percentage points from 2019. As a nursing leader with close interaction with the range of Hicuity Health client hospitals, I’ve had the opportunity to observe these trends first-hand. In 2021, a range of potent forces added velocity to this urgent and growing shortage of nurses nationwide. Immediate issues, including the demands of COVID care since early 2020, the widely-reported Great Resignation, and ongoing burnout and turnover issues specific to nursing have created increased urgency around the issue of nursing shortages. According to the Medscape Nurse Career Satisfaction Report 2021, 47% of RN respondents reported that

the pandemic decreased their career satisfaction. Among all nursing respondents, 33% reported being either “burned out” or “very burned out”. More recently, in surveys released at the end of 2021, 16 states reported more than 25% of their hospitals were facing critical staffing shortages, with the challenge expected to intensify in the short term due to the dual impact of the omicron variant: more patients sick with COVID and fewer nurses available to work due to COVID infection. We’ve certainly seen a steadily high patient census due to COVID and have worked urgently with hospitals facing staffing shortages. Hospitals have been forced to create both short-term and longer-term responses to the trio of staffing issues: shortages, burnout, and turnover. With longerterm plans frequently interrupted by a new surge

or demand. Whereas an authorization to simply hire more nurses might address similar situations in the past, recruiting efforts are proving increasingly difficult in a situation of national need and true underlying shortage. Many hospitals turned to travel nurses in an attempt to bolster their staffing, typically at a high cost and with mixed results. Some hospitals were compelled to increase nurse-patient ratios or to engage more non-nursing support, when available, which nominally addressed staffing shortages but risked intensifying nursing burnout. Against this backdrop, the development of a variety of virtual nursing services offers hope to short-staffed hospitals and their beleaguered frontline nurses. Most simply, technology-enabled virtual nursing ensures that the work that needs to be done gets done, while



bedside nurses maintain a priority focus on those nursing elements that can only be done in person and at the bedside. The nursing tasks that can be done by a virtual nurse are numerous; examples include admission and discharge documentation, patient and family education, medication reconciliation, patient monitoring, precepting, other documentation, and many others. The goal is not simply to relocate the workload but, by doing so, improve patient care, staff support, and clinical outcomes.

The impact of adding virtual nursing care is multidimensional. Most importantly, it allows the bedside nursing team to focus on hands-on patient care. Some studies have found resulting increases in patient satisfaction scores. It also provides real-time support for the bedside team, helping to reduce stress and burnout. It enables the hospital to “add staff” without finding them locally or relocating them. In doing so, it can materially improve the hospital’s nursing costs. The NSI study found that the average hospital

could save more than $3M annually for every 20 travel nurses eliminated; virtual nursing can reduce or eliminate the reliance on travel nurses. Virtual nursing also eliminates nursing turnover risk for the hospital, as the virtual services provider takes on the responsibility for hiring, retaining, and seamlessly augmenting the virtual nursing staff. In one recent virtual nursing service deployment, Hicuity Health was approached by a large hospital system facing a significant short-term nursing shortage. Within two weeks of the first phone call, Hicuity was able to integrate a virtual nursing solution into the existing practices and workflows across four system hospitals. The large, nationally-recognized system immediately benefited from virtual nursing help sourced without regard to its physical location – and without the cost and challenge of locating travel nurses and relocating them. Hicuity Health’s virtual nursing services include continuous patient monitoring, hourly rounding, admission history, patient education, and documentation of ADLs (activities of daily living). By accessing these services via a virtual nursing program, systems immediately offset onsite nursing shortages while also ensuring that bedside nurses feel wellsupported and better able to focus on hands-on patient care. Tele-nursing is not new to Hicuity Health. For sixteen years telemedicine nursing has been an integral part of our multiple service lines. With our sophisticated technology enablement in place, we are able to offer Virtual Nursing as a stand-alone service, leveraging our previous experience and seasoned telemedicine nurses to anticipate needs, customize programs and related workflows, and continue to ensure the highest levels of patient care throughout the hospital.

Tele-nursing is not new to Hicuity Health. For sixteen years telemedicine nursing has been an integral part of our tele-ICU and inpatient telemetry services. With our multi-location staffing and technology interface in place, we are able to offer Virtual Nursing as a stand-alone service, leveraging our previous experience and seasoned telemedicine nurses to anticipate unstated needs, customize workflows appropriately – and provide care with our clients for our mutual patients.



Hicuity Health: Speaking from a Leadership Position As a leader in telemedicine Hicuity Health has been at the forefront of innovation for nearly 16 years. Throughout 2021 members of our senior team shared insights on Provider-to-Provider Telemedicine, Critical Care, and developments in telemedicine.

Provider-to-Provider Telemedicine: 15 Years in the Making CEO Lou Silverman joins Scott Becker of Becker’s Healthcare to discuss the evolution of Provider-to-Provider Telemedicine. The podcast details how Hicuity Health is shaping technology-enabled care delivery and the role telemedicine plays in healthcare today. ■ Listen to the full podcast here (17 minutes)

Exploring the Evolution of Critical Care This ATA 2021 panel highlights the changing face of critical care medicine. Hear how Hicuity Health aids hospitals and systems in extending critical care beyond the walls of the ICU. ■ Watch the complete panel discussion here (30 minutes)

How Acute Care Monitoring Improves Nursing Life Marcia Murphy, VP of Clinical Operations and Nursing, and Ellen McEvoy, Director of New Product Development, review Acute Care Monitoring and its benefits for bedside nurses. This discussion details how working with a trusted partner can help bedside nurses retain focus on patient care. ■ Watch the complete presentation here (25 minutes)

Telehealth’s Trajectory: Provider’s Perspectives on the Future Hicuity Health joins client Mandy Halford, MD, SVP and CMIO of Covenant Health, and Definitive Healthcare to discuss the utilization of telehealth and how it can address the current challenges in medicine. ■ Watch the complete webinar here (46 Minutes)

Evolving to a Hybrid Model of Care CEO Lou Silverman joined a panel of telemedicine experts for a discussion of the developing hybrid model of healthcare, the pairing of telemedicine and in-person experiences into an integrated healthcare experience. ■ Watch the complete panel discussion here (40 minutes)



2021 Milestones and Achievements

The Nation’s Leading Provider of Acute Care Telemedicine

120,000 patients

Hicuity Health provides care to more than 115 partner hospitals in 30 states nationwide, improving clinical outcomes for patients and supporting bedside teams so they can focus on patient care around-the-clock. Our expanding range of services presents a diversity of clinical challenges – and leads us to a variety of success metrics.

More than


patient hours of care

115+ facilities served

more than a quarter of a million telemetry alarms managed


patient days of care

>1.2M patient interactions

48,000 MORE

patient video assessments HicuityHealth.com


WE SEE YOU CARE Awards Recognize Client Telemedicine Efforts for 6th Consecutive Year THE 2021 HICUITY HEALTH WE SEE YOU CARE AWARD HONOREES As telemedicine has become established as an integral part of healthcare, the opportunity to recognize expert practitioners and advocates could not be more appropriate. For a sixth consecutive year, Hicuity Health affirmed that “telemedicine is medicine” by presenting its WE SEE YOU CARE Awards to recognize our partners whose collaborative efforts support the continued success of telemedicine programs within their hospitals and systems. Provider-to-provider telemedicine continues to prove itself as an effective tool to enhance patient care, elevate patient outcomes, and increase support and decrease stress for bedside clinical teams. “As healthcare increasingly recognizes that telemedicine truly is medicine, the collaborative efforts of our nominees and award winners, along with the day-to-day dedication of our care teams and those of our clients, provide outstanding examples of how to seamlessly integrate the bedside and the webside to provide outstanding patient care. We are excited to publicly recognize this year’s winners,” said Lou Silverman, CEO of Hicuity Health.

Care Units and Organizations: UAB Medicine, University of Alabama MUSC Health, Kershaw Medical Center Ballad/Greeneville Community Hospital Baptist Health Corbin CCU & RT

Individuals: Kerry Baucom, RN Sarah Hannah, RN Robert Helfrich, IT Keith Meredith, PharmD

Sarah Hannah, RN is recognized at Baptist Medical Center Nassau UAB Medicine team members celebrate award recognition

Do you have a partner that should be recognized for their work with telemedicine?

(above) Kerry Baucom, RN with AdventHealth Gordon co-workers (right) Robert Helfrich, AdventHealth

Baptist Health Corbin, CCU & RT team members

Nominations are now open for the 7th annual WE SEE YOU CARE awards.

Nominate Here

2021 WE SEE YOU CARE award HicuityHealth.com








Advanced ICU Care Rebrands as Hicuity Health: “The name Hicuity Health reflects both our pioneering high-acuity telemedicine past and the company’s vibrant future,” said Tom Bobich, Vice President of Marketing, Hicuity Health in a statement. “While the organization was founded based on a single service, we continue to add new service lines and have grown to be the nation’s largest provider of tele-ICU and remote cardiac telemetry services. We wanted a brand name that encompassed all of our capabilities, both current and anticipated. ” Hicuity Health Receives Best Remote Patient Monitoring Solution Award: “In 2020, Hicuity Health was selected as a MedTech Breakthrough Award winner for offering the ‘Best Remote Patient Monitoring Solution’,” said James Johnson, managing director, MedTech Breakthrough. “In honoring the company with a 2021 award, we recognize an exceptional remote inpatient telemetry implementation with one of the organization’s valued partners, which began as a cardiac monitoring pilot and, based on demonstrable success, quickly scaled across the entire health system.” Panel Presentation during HLTH 2021 Highlighted the When and How of Telehealth: “Broadly, I think we’re seeing significant transition from people thinking about if telemedicine is for them to when and how, and I think that’s a win for everybody,” said Silverman during a panel session called “Healthcare’s Future: Evolving to a Hybrid Model of Care.” Technology-enabled Services Making a Difference for Bedside Teams: The COVID-19 pandemic has shed harsh light on the fact that nurses are under significant pressure and must attend to numerous responsibilities. SmartBrief spoke with Marcia Murphy, VP of Clinical Operations and Nursing at Hicuity Health, on how technology-enabled services can ease the burden. Nursing Leadership Spotlights Patient Monitoring Innovation at ANCC Conference: Marcia Murphy, VP of Clinical Operations and Nursing, and Ellen McEvoy, Director of New Product Development, discussed how virtual services provide nurse managers options that decrease administrative challenges through the delegation of monitoring, hiring, managing and training to a trusted partner while also providing nursing staff with additional support.

2021 Year-End

Progress is the path that takes all of us from today to tomorrow. And from tomorrow to the tomorrow after tomorrow. The quest for doing more and doing it better is a calling that unites and motivates all of Hicuity Health. Progress, therefore, is on the agenda every year for the Hicuity Health team.

The year 2021 was one of notable progress for Hicuity Health. We enter 2022 inspired to once again turn opportunities into accomplishments.

Lou Silverman, CEO

” HicuityHealth.com


About Us For 16+ years, Hicuity Health has pioneered telemedicine innovations. Serving a diverse range of clients and care venues – including health systems, hospitals, post-acute care facilities, and at-home environments – with an expanding line of services that includes tele-ICU, inpatient cardiac telemetry, virtual nursing, shared services, virtual sitter, and smart device monitoring, the company is the leader in delivering expert care on a 24 x 7 x 365 basis to high acuity patients in high acuity environments. Our innovation is highlighted by our proprietary HUB workflow management technology platform, which enables seamless care delivery and informs patient management across our 11 clinical care centers that serve our more than 115 hospital partners located in 30 states nationwide. Hicuity Health cares for more than 120,000 patients per year, delivering enhanced patient outcomes, tangible ROI, and expert clinical support for the bedside teams at our partner hospitals. To learn more about us, visit HicuityHealth.com.