In the wake of the pandemic, today’s healthcare environments must reconsider how they retrofit existing medical spaces and, more importantly, how they design healthcare facilities for the future.

As Vitalchat CEO Alan Pitt, MD prepares to speak at the CREW Network Convention in Atlanta, we explore how inpatient telehealth supports the panel’s central theme of reimagining hospital design.

Functionality Over Aesthetics

Traditionally, hospitals, clinics and senior living facilities prioritized aesthetics in their designs. However, in the current climate of a tightening labor force, the focus must shift to functional requirements that allow for cost-effective patient care.

Every hospital is understaffed, leading to bed and operating room closures. Telehealth can bridge this gap by enabling remote healthcare workers to supplement in-person care.

Beyond Drugs & Surgery

While healthcare often revolves around medications and surgical procedures, what patients and their families truly seek is reassurance. Telemedicine can empower family members, an untapped resource in our healthcare system, to actively participate in their loved ones’ care.

The technology also provides a platform for less-experienced providers to receive real-time guidance from mentors, ultimately resulting in improved care at reduced costs.

Broadening the Scope of Telemedicine

Historically, telemedicine had a niche presence within hospitals, primarily deployed on medical carts resembling mobile TVs. We must shift toward incorporating video communication into every healthcare space and reevaluate hospital bandwidth to support this transformation.

The Intelligent Room of the Future

Future healthcare spaces should not only feature video capabilities, but also ambient intelligence. These rooms should provide real-time data to hospital administrators, allowing them to monitor the status of patients and spaces efficiently.

Embracing technology that accommodates people, rather than expecting people to adapt to technology, is paramount. For decades, medical technology has left gaps that rely on individuals to compensate for shortages. These technologies should enhance the working environment for healthcare providers.

At Vitalchat, our aspiration is to help hospital administrators in redesigning existing spaces and, ideally, inspiring architects to reimagine future healthcare environments.

Watch or request a demo of our inpatient telehealth solutions, and don’t miss Dr. Pitt’s presentation at CREW on Sept. 20.