Galveston County Health District (GCHD) has launched a new, innovative patient care system with HealthCall to help monitor active COVID-19 cases in Galveston County.
HealthCall has been in the patient care business for 15 years and serves clients across the United States. Its partnership with GCHD is a first when it comes to monitoring active COVID-19 cases.
“We are excited to partner with HealthCall. The company was able to customize its patient care system to meet our needs during the COVID-19 pandemic,” said GCHD CEO Kathy Barroso. “This new automated system will streamline case management of COVID-19 cases.”
Beginning today, any new, active COVID-19 cases reported to the health district will be entered into the HealthCall system.
Initial case management calls will continue to be made by the health district’s team of nurses monitoring active COVID- 19 cases, led by TB/Community Health Services Manager Ami Cotharn.
“We want that first interaction to be with someone on our team. We can explain the process to them, see how they’re feeling and answer any questions they may have,” Cotharn said.
After that, cases will opt into texts, emails or calls from the health district’s personalized, automated system named Lisa. Staff will walk each person through the process during the initial case management call. Each day, an active case will be contacted and asked to answer about 10 questions to screen for symptoms and to monitor their progression.
Lisa will assist in monitoring symptoms of active cases while also helping health district nurses determine further medical needs. It is vitally important that active cases respond to the alerts.
“Those answers are then sent to my team so that we can review and monitor any changes,” Cotharn explained. “The system will alert us if we need to call and personally check on the patient and when they’ve met the criteria to be discharged and listed as recovered. We’ve tested out the system and it takes less than 30 seconds to answer the questions.”
If a patient has a question or would like to speak with a nurse during the automated monitoring process, they can push a button to immediately contact Cotharn and her team.
“Not only does this streamline monitoring cases, it also gives people easier access to staff if they have any concerns or questions,” Cotharn said.
Cases that were active prior to today will continue to receive calls from the case monitoring team.
“New active cases will be entered into the system while staff continues to monitor older active cases,” Cotharn explained. “The goal is that eventually all active cases will be monitored through HealthCall.”
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