IH region benefits from heart monitor upgrade
Interior Health (IH) is upgrading heart monitors across the region, improving patient access to important diagnostic testing, and enhancing timely access for physicians and nurse practitioners to these reports.
A heart (or Holter) monitor is a diagnostic test that monitors cardiac rhythms via continuous electrocardiogram (ECG) tracing over 24 hours or more. This service is offered at 31 sites across IH.
For patients, the new devices and system will prevent diagnostic cancellation or the need for diagnostics due to equipment issues. Sites can also share the workload to scan the Holter exams if one site has an unexpected increased volume, decreasing the time to get results.
This project is the outcome of the collaborative efforts between IH and the Royal Inland Hospital (RIH) Foundation. The project came to fruition as a result of a generous estate gift from Bill and Catherina Humphrey.
“Without the support of the RIH Foundation and the donors, this project to this extent would not have been possible,” said Interior Health vice president of clinical operations, Dr. Shallen Letwin. “We’re proud to be able to provide first-class cardiac care to people living across the Interior region.”
“The Royal Inland Hospital Foundation is proud to take care of our big family at Interior Health. The impact of this legacy donation is greater than we could have ever wished for,” explained Heidi Coleman, CEO of the RIH Foundation.
All sites in IH will be provided with new equipment to replace older monitors and scanning software. Phased out equipment still within its operational life will be donated to other areas in need. Implementation started in March and the rollout across IH will be complete in June.
“As a physician, it’s convenient to be able to report Holter results from any computer,” said Dr. Shawn Pun of Kamloops. “This system has great potential to reduce current Holter reporting turnaround times, a huge benefit to both our patients and health-care providers.”
Number of sites
o Scanning sites: Eight
o Remote sites: 24
Total number of devices purchased and distributed:
o 275 Holter monitors
o 25 remote licence keys
o 16 scanning licence keys
Lead image: Kelowna General Hospital cardio tech supervisor, Heidi Walwyn, demonstrates applying a heart monitor on Interior Health cardiac manager Mack Cheyne. Interior Health photo