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Silverton, Randall Children’s Hospital at Legacy Emanuel Team Up on Telemedicine Project

Staff and medical providers at Legacy Silverton Medical Center have a new tool to turn to when a newborn infant is in crisis. Legacy TeleBaby Resuscitation is a Skype-like high definition telemedicine robot that allows Silverton staff to communicate with expert neonatal nurse practitioners at Legacy Health’s Randall Children’s Hospital at Legacy Emanuel in Portland.

Already a leader in total number of births for small Oregon hospitals, Family Birth Center at Legacy Silverton Medical Center continues their track record of excellence by embracing new, yet proven, technology to help their patients. If a baby is having an emergency, Silverton doctors and nurses may now connect with neonatal nurse practitioners in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit at Randall Children’s Hospital to confer on the baby’s best treatment options.

According to FBC Manager Amy Reyes, “TeleBaby saves response time and immediately allows nurses to begin to alleviate the baby’s health concern(s); gives the doctor time to arrive in a safe, yet timely, manner; and provides another set of expert eyes to assist in managing the baby’s care.”

Currently 12 nurses are being trained as lead TeleBaby staff to integrate the service into the Family Birth Center 24/7. There is also a second TeleBaby robot that will be available in the ER/OR of the hospital. June 13 will see mock training with the telemedicine equipment and resuscitation procedures, and June 15 will see providers getting some hands-on training as well.  TeleBaby is set to go live at the FBC on June 16.

Here’s how Legacy TeleBaby Resuscitation works: if a newborn in Silverton’s Family Birth Center is anticipated to need resuscitation, or shows signs of distress after birth, nurses and doctors will be in contact with a neonatal nurse practitioner at Randall Children’s Hospital within seconds via the robot. It allows both sets of practitioners to determine the diagnosis and condition of a newborn in real time. The caregivers, based on the newborn’s color, breathing and other conditions, then make an informed decision on the baby’s care and whether he/she needs to be transported to a Neonatal Intensive Care Unit.

“These are literally life-saving moments. They are critical times at a family birth center,” said Lauren Rose, M.D., medical director of Newborn Nurseries at Randall Children’s Hospital.

The robot is a state of the art remote presence device with a video camera that tilts and zooms, microphone, and liquid crystal display (LCD) screen. Two way video conferencing allows both sites to collaborate on the newborn’s care.

Legacy Good Samaritan Medical Center in Portland implemented the use of Legacy TeleBaby Resuscitation in May 2012. After great success, services were expanded into Legacy Mount Hood Medical Center and Legacy Meridian Park Medical Center. In addition, Portland Adventist and Hermiston also use TeleBaby. Legacy TeleBaby Resuscitation is utilized at minimum one to two times per week, with an estimated 1/3 increase with the addition of Silverton Hospital.