In an interaction with ETHealthworld, Nitin Gupta, Country Manager, Fujifilm Sonosite-India, spoke on how the point-of-care Ultrasound (POCUS) is revolutionizing the healthcare industry & its utility in the current pandemic scenario.
How point-of-care Ultrasound is beneficial in enhancing patient safety, infection control & reducing costs at Hospitals? How Sonosite Ultrasound machines add value in improving the quality scores at hospitals?
For the patient, ultrasound is non-invasive and involves no radiation exposure. For the physician, ultrasound can be a more efficient way to locate pathologies and performing guided procedures. Point of Care Ultrasound (POCUS) is a visualization tool that boosts physician confidence in locating target anatomy in real-time with precision, and in-turn helps in quick decision making during crucial times. Point-of-care ultrasound (POCUS) is also ideal for guiding nerve blocks, which reduces or can even eliminate the need for opioids and other painkillers for surgical procedures. That way, the patient avoids the risks of side-effects and potential addiction.
POCUS also helps the physician cut costs by streamlining clinical management and reducing the need for tests. When incorporated into hospital protocols, it can lower direct and indirect costs associated with diagnostic workups. Ultrasound-guided nerve blocks also help keep costs down, as the patient has a shorter hospital stay and avoids the expenses associated with the painkilling medication.
We design our machines to be easy to clean, with buttons and screens that won’t harbor germs. We also ensure our systems can withstand hundreds of hours of cleaning and disinfecting. In addition, our systems’ small footprint won’t take up too much room in trauma bay or indoor patient department, so one can avoid having to squeeze past machines and tripping over wires.
With compact or bedside ultrasound, patients don’t have to move around the hospital, which helps to decrease chances for infection. Our company offers a six-step Central Line Management Training Program, which includes SonoSite’s exclusive last step of ultrasound guidance for line placement. Research has shown that by using ultrasound guidance for central line placements, the risk for cannulation failure, arterial puncture, and other insertion complications is decreased.
What is the significance of imparting Ultrasound education & elaborate few educational offerings of Fujifilm Sonosite Company?
Education is one of Sonosite’s four pillars and the key to unlocking ultrasound’s full potential. We cannot emphasize enough how important it is to spread and support POCUS skills among the medical community. POCUS education plays a vital role in boosting physician confidence in using ultrasound systems. Healthcare improvements are driven by better outcomes, quicker recoveries, fewer re-admissions, and lower infection rates.
We have been actively associated in training more than 60,000 physicians across South Asia in last 14 years. On average every year we support over 150 ultrasound training programs and medical societies’ academic events across India & neighboring countries.
With every Sonosite system purchase, our customers get full access to Sonosite Institute – an online portal for ultrasound education at no extra cost.
SonoAccess is our free mobile app for ultrasound education that comes in handy for quick, on-the-go reference right on the smartphone. In addition, our YouTube channel features free educational videos. We also offer in-person customized education programs at hospital premises based on their requirement.
Another great source of ultrasound education is our Visual Medicine blogs and webinars, which highlights how POCUS is used around the world, along with the latest trends in ultrasound technology and related medical studies.
What are the current trends in the point-of-care segment? What differentiates Sonosite from the other ultrasound players in the industry?
The recent trend includes the incorporation of Artificial Intelligence into ultrasound and the further miniaturization of devices. Our parent company has collaborated with Allen Institute of Artificial Intelligence (AI2) Incubator, builder of AI-first startups, to interpret ultrasound images with AI, enabling new ultrasound applications and enhanced accuracy and also announced the launch of a strategic relationship with Partners HealthCare in US to apply artificial intelligence (AI) to POCUS applications last year. The two companies will collaborate to use AI-based models that will assist clinicians in the diagnosis and enhance the quality of care. AI’s applications include supplementing POCUS education, rapidly analyzing and comparing thousands of scans, and helping the physicians get the best imaging.
But even with groundbreaking advances in ultrasound technology, Sonosite’s four pillars—Reliability, Durability, Ease-of-Use, and Education—is still what makes Sonosite different from other ultrasound companies. Physicians will always need a durable, reliable machine with intuitive controls. And both new and veteran healthcare professionals will always need more ultrasound education to ensure they give their patients the best care possible. Sonosite’s dedication to the four pillars is what makes the most difference in comparing different ultrasound systems. Not to mention our outstanding warranty and technical support, which is unmatched by our competitors.
What role does point-of-care ultrasound play in the current Covid-19 scenario?
Being cost-effective and compact in size it is associated with minimal logistical disruption, less PPE kit requirement can be repeatedly performed at the bedside and easy to sanitize as compared to other imaging modalities.
Sonosite is unwavering in its commitment to partnering with physicians in the battle against Covid-19. We have devised numerous online academic programs to assist physicians on how point-of-care ultrasound is invaluable in Covid-19 settings and are hosting regular webinars in collaborations with different medical societies since mid-March 2020 across the sub-continent region.
We also have compiled a list of digital resources that contains relevant ultrasound educational videos, white paper, infection control information & other related articles for free access to physicians.
What is Fujifilm Sonosite’s vision for its customers and industry partners in the Indian subcontinent region?
Education is an essential part of our relationship with our customers and partners. Our vision is to advocate for visual medicine ultrasound training programs and continue to forge our academic partnerships with elite medical societies. We also have plans to create Public-Private Partnerships by collaborating with premier government institutes to develop new ultrasound skill centers across the subcontinent region. We remain committed to promote the ethical use of ultrasound by equipping clinicians with easily accessible, high-quality, and affordable point-of-care ultrasound technology, empowering physicians to deliver the best possible care—for any patient, anywhere, anytime.
Also, we will soon reveal the whole new vision in the form of our latest best-in-class ultrasound technology in the subcontinent region.
(Brand Connect Initiative)