Teleneurology for Stroke Patients in the Emergency Department
Teleneurology for Stroke Patients in the Emergency Department
Stroke is a health condition resulting from blood supply to the brain and affects a significant population today (Donkor, 2018). Health research reports indicate that individuals suffering or experiencing stroke need immediate and emergency treatment to save their lives. Stroke mainly affects the arteries that supply blood and nutrients to the brain. When the blood supply is blocked from reaching the brain, it leads to death or dysfunction of brain cells. A stroke can be led by a clot or blockage of blood flow to the brain. It can be led to blood vessels rupturing and hider the brain blood flow, a condition known as a hemorrhagic stroke (Donkor, 2018). When an individual experience or is affected by a stroke, need immediate and emergency medication attention to control the condition before the individual loses their life. This is because the brain is the central body part that is highly complex and controls various body functions, and there is a need to keep fluent blood and nutrient supply for its effective functioning. As a result of its urgency for medical attention, there is a need to implement technology or teleneurology in the emergency department to effectively attend to all patients affected by stroke and save their lives. This research paper primarily focuses on implementing innovative technology in stroke units to prevent or reduce death and disabilities resulting from a stroke. The paper focuses on the implementation of teleneurology in emergency stroke departments to facilitate or enable healthcare to provide high-quality primary medical care. Since some stroke patients need specific and impactful treatments that can be facilitated through the innovation of technology that can help assess neurological impairment and other related factors.
Many stroke patients need neurocritical care from intensive care nursing units, and there is a need to implement innovative technology for effective care for people experiencing a stroke (Ryan, 2019). The need for innovation and implementation of technology in intensive care units because people experiencing stroke need speed, critical and successful treatment that nursing professionals may not be able to provide when there are many people with stroke who are presented in the unit simultaneously. Failure to provide adequate care for these people in the intensive care unit leads to a high mortality rate. And this gives a significant reason for the implementation of teleneurology in this section because research indicates that 20% of people experiencing stroke need effective care and management in an intensive care unit (ICU) (Ashcraft et al., 2021). Innovation in the intensive care unit is significant because it is imperative for health care providers (nurses) working in this unit to be knowledgeable concerning providing adequate care for stroke patients through teleneurology.
Implementation of teleneurology or telestroke technology innovation in intensive care units (ICU) is significant since it consists of sophisticated two-way audio and visual system, enabling nurses in intensive care units to assess patients experiencing a stroke. Teleneurology technology innovation consists of a system that enables stroke and neurocritical care nurses/healthcare providers to instantly assess stroke patients arriving in intensive care units and provide fast and effective treatment to control the condition. The innovation will allow nurses or healthcare professionals in this unit to direct emergency treatments, such as performing fast surgeries to dissolve the blood clots that cause blockage and causing stroke and prevent devastating brain injury on time.
Implementing this innovation in the intensive care unit for people experiencing stroke enables the patients coming through the emergency department to receive stroke code activation that includes consultation with the teleneurology team (Demaerschalk, 2019). This code is essential in the unit because it is used when evaluating the effectiveness of emergency stroke treatment provided via telemedicine. Telemedicine enables the provision of care services that nurses cannot provide physically and improves the efficiency and effectiveness of services; research indicates that the implementation of teleneurology in the intensive care unit (ICU) will significantly improve the recovery and survival of the people experiencing a stroke (Amatangelo, 2020).
Some strategies must be considered to ensure that teleneurology is efficiently implemented. First, there is a need to conduct training for the patient service representatives whose role is to schedule, reschedule, and triage patients’ visits to assess their progress. This can be made easy by using the code that patients are provided with. The second strategy is to train the nursing staff. This is to teach nurses techniques to use technology and effectively consolidate learning objectives. Another step is training physicians to use technology platforms that enable physician-patient virtual interaction (Katyal et al., 2022).
Moreover, the next step/strategy is to provide education concerning the telehealth clinic process that all physicians and all care providers must follow. Lastly, I would ensure enough hardware and software support for the technology within the intensive care unit to ensure it runs effectively and has no failures. However, various questions can determine whether the innovation is practical (Katyal et al., 2022). These questions include, has the implementation of teleneurology reduced the mortality rate of stroke patients? Has teleneurology led to an increased number of stroke patients who have recovered when compared before its implementation?
Conclusively, teleneurology is a practical innovation that needs to be implemented in the intensive care unit since it facilitates fast and effective care for emergency stroke patients. Moreover, the incorporation of telemedicine helps in helping stroke patients in remote areas who need neurologic care. The innovation of teleneurology will enable neurologists to be in a better position to meet the demands of people experiencing stroke and the burgeoning need for access to neurologic care. And to ensure the effectiveness of the teleneurology in the intensive care unit, the American Stroke Association has established a defined policy towards teleneurology that the American Academy of Neurology and the national health care policy have begun to adhere to for the adequate provision of emergency treatment for a stroke patient (Demaerschalk, 2019).
Amatangelo, M. (Ed.). (2020). ICU Nursing Priorities for Stroke Patients, An Issue of Critical Care Nursing Clinics of North America (Vol. 32, No. 1). Elsevier Health Sciences.
Ashcraft, S., Wilson, S. E., Nyström, K. V., Dusenbury, W., Wira, C. R., Burrus, T. M., & American Heart Association Council on Cardiovascular and Stroke Nursing and the Stroke Council. (2021). Care of the patient with acute ischemic stroke (prehospital and acute phase of care): update to the 2009 comprehensive nursing care scientific statement: a scientific statement from the American Heart Association. Stroke, 52(5), e164-e178.
Demaerschalk, B. M. (2019). Telestroke and Neurocritical Care. In Telemedicine in the ICU (pp. 213-224). Springer, Cham.
Donkor, E. S. (2018). Stroke in the century: a snapshot of the burden, epidemiology, and quality of life. Stroke research and treatment, 2018.
Katyal, N., Narula, N., Govindarajan, R., & Sahota, P. (2022). Setting Up a Teleneurology Clinic during COVID-19 Pandemic: Experience from an Academic Practice. International Journal of Telemedicine and Applications, 2022.
Ryan, D. (Ed.). (2019). Handbook of neuroscience nursing: care of the adult neurosurgical patient. Georg Thieme Verlag.