“Our palliative care team – one physician, two nurse practitioners, and a social worker – all have iPads and use the ACP Tools application. We access the Internet via Banner’s guest wi-fi network, thus eliminating issues of firewalls and other IT security issues…”
Dr. Robert Fried, Medical Director, Colorado Medical Center
ACP Tools App
iPads and iPhones
Dr. Fried is currently the Medical Director of Palliative Care at the North Colorado Medical Center in Greeley, CO. Here, he discusses how he and his colleagues have successfully implemented the ACP Decisions Video Program at his institution.
Tell me about your current work with ACP Decisions.
I had experience with ACP Decisions at a previous job, so when I moved to Colorado I was anxious to use the videos here. My hospital is part of a large, multi-state health care system, so naturally there was an extended review process before the project could be approved. At North Colorado Medical Center, we actually are testing the project for Banner Health as a whole. If we get the results we hope for, it’s likely that the ACP Decisions series will be made available at all of our 24 hospitals and many or all of our outpatient clinics.
What is the timeline of the project?
We had to “make the case” to people within our organization responsible for overseeing patient education and multimedia resources. Once approved, we began to use the videos within our palliative care team. We now are broadening access to the videos and have begun a process to train others in their use.
What technology do you use to deliver the ACP Decisions Video Program?
Our palliative care team – one physician, two nurse practitioners, and a social worker – all have iPads and use the ACP Tools application. We access the Internet via Banner’s guest wi-fi network, thus eliminating issues of firewalls and other IT security issues that arose when we proposed using tablets that are not officially supported by Banner. The videos are available on every computer mounted on a cart (which we call a WOW, a Workstation on Wheels). These are on every nursing unit. Our family medicine residents use laptops when they see their patients, and the videos are available on those, too. Our IT department created an icon that lives on the Windows Desktop, allowing one-click access to the full video series.
What are your hopes for the ACP Decisions Video Program?
We hoped the videos would facilitate conversations about late-life and end-of-life care. So far our strong impression is that we have realized that benefit.
How has communication with patients changed using these tools?
We use the videos as suggested by ACP Decisions’s guidelines. Palliative care team members carry iPads and show the videos as part of discussions with patients and families as we deem appropriate.
Where are you using the ACP Decisions videos?
Currently we are using the ACP Decisions Videos with inpatients and with selected outpatients seen in the palliative care clinic. Once training is complete, our hospital-affiliated family medicine residency program will be able to use the videos in its office practice.
We also are working with our emergency department and care management department to develop a workflow in the ED that would incorporate the use of videos after hours and on weekends when the palliative care team is not present.