The camera detects subtle changes in the face or chest that can indicate possible complications after surgery. Approximately 40% of complications and unexpected deaths occur in a normal nursing ward. “We think we can reduce complications and unexpected deaths with technology, like the smart camera,” says Bouwman. “Currently, we can already monitor a patient’s heart rate remotely. Added to this are breathing, temperature, movement.
Investigate false alarms
In the coming years, the new technology will be further tested clinically. Bouwman and the researchers also look at users of the technology—for example, what the effect of the camera or the smart patch is on patients. Does he like the camera or not? The advantage of a smart patient camera is that they don’t wear devices on their body.
We are also investigating whether the camera is easy to use and does not give false alarms too often and how artificial intelligence can help doctors and nurses interpret the enormous amounts of data that new technologies, such as the smart camera, collect in order to improve the clinical ability to make decisions. “For example, photonic measurement methods are being developed that can be used to measure so sensitively with the help of light that new physiological parameters become available. If healthcare professionals are better supported in making clinical decisions, healthcare can be organized even more efficiently in the right place. By preventing complications and readmissions, this will have an additional impact on capacity and costs.”
Collaborate more closely
According to Bouwman, the healthcare sector can meet the big challenges with the use of medical technology and, for example, artificial intelligence. “People are aging and with staff shortages across healthcare institutions, we need to consider how we can deliver care even more efficiently. Which patient goes to the ICU after the operation, who can go to the nursing ward and who can even go home early?” Bouwman explains, “which means we have to work together even more intensely throughout the care process. From the general practitioner, from home care to the hospital”.
Bouwman was behind the clinical implementation of Healthdot by Philips; the patch that ensures patients can go home sooner after surgery. He continues to work at Catharina Hospital as an anesthetist.