I have had the extraordinary pleasure of working with Christa on a variety of telemedicine and simulation projects. She has been instrumental in the development of a new program where we provide telemedicine services to medically complex patients after discharge. We identify infants with complex needs such as tracheostomy, gastrostomy tubes, home oxygen, and wounds. Prior to discharge, we have the families download software on their phones and after discharge, at the first pediatrician visit, we are able to virtually "join" the first pediatrician visit. We have found this program to be tremendously helpful for the families and pediatricians.
The virtual patient handoff is a significant improvement over the traditional handoff of faxing/sending a discharge summary. We are able to communicate to the pediatrician important exam findings such as baseline work of breathing, baseline wound status, etc., medication plans, and important pieces of follow-up such as referrals that need to be made. Christa has been absolutely instrumental in working with these families and arranging this sign-out.
Additionally, Christa and I have been providing home virtual visits to families with complex medical needs. The transition from the NICU to home is difficult for many families. Medically fragile babies can be very intimidating for new parents and a little virtual reassurance is very helpful for them. We have provided reassurance to several families that they were indeed doing a good job with their home care, particularly wound care.
The reinforcement that these parents are doing a good job is a wonderful service to provide these new families, and Christa is just spectacular working with them. I am so proud of the magnificent job Christa does to improve the outcomes of our delicate patients, even after they have left our NICU. She is an outstanding nurse, always willing to go the extra mile to make sure our patients get the best care possible, and we are lucky to have her.