Using data to improve emergency response resources in healthcare arena
The ability for a COVID-19 outbreak to swiftly consume emergency response resources has emphasized the need for accurate and timely data reporting as a central component of the pandemic response effort. Continuous analysis of data collected is producing concerning results for response leaders, as new variants of the virus are discovered, and the United States continually breaks (or meets) its daily record of new cases and deaths.
As cases spiked towards the end of 2020, health-care workers across the country continued to work tirelessly to meet the challenge. But the numerous hotspots occurring almost simultaneously made it increasingly difficult for facilities in hard-hit areas to receive much-needed staffing and supplies from nearby regions. This has negatively impacted the response of care facilities to treat and care for those infected and strained additional emergency response resources as cities and states also responded to intense wildfires, an active hurricane season and civil unrest.
To ensure resources are being deployed efficiently, COVID-19 data reporting and response tracking efforts have been deployed to give emergency management teams and care facilities accurate, real-time information. With this insight, public health authorities, emergency response organizations, insurers and health-care facilities can make better informed decisions and stay ahead of the virus by securing needed resources.
But collecting data can be a challenge as frontline health-care workers, who are tasked with care and now the vaccination of the community, already have a vast amount of information they are required to provide and track daily. Additionally, expanding reporting requirements can be tough for smaller health-care systems and those in rural communities as they typically have fewer resources than urban care systems.
To improve data collection efforts, health-care organizations are leveraging the use of emergency management technology platforms to help with gathering and reporting COVID-19 data. These systems are designed to help organizations complete crucial tasks, including:
- Managing emergencies and mass casualty incidents
- Tracking patients and medical surges
- Providing pre-hospital notifications from emergency medical services teams en route
- Mitigating accreditation risks
- Streamlining reporting to enable documentation for reimbursements
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