Caregility’s New Telehealth Systems Highlight Growing AI Uptake within High-Acuity Telehealth

Published: January 23, 2024

Cranfield, UK, 23rd January 2024 – The growing prevalence and importance of AI capabilities within high-acuity telehealth was reaffirmed last week with Caregility’s announcement that it’s launching a new class of telehealth device to support hybrid care models and augment bedside workflows.

The vendor unveiled an update to its ‘Adaptive Telehealth Devices’ hardware portfolio, including the APS200 Duo, the company’s first dual-camera, all-in-one system with integrated edge computing, wide-angle camera to support remote patient observation and a high-definition 40x zoom camera, ideal for virtual nursing programs and remote patient examinations.

It also revealed the second-generation of its APS100 Pro all-in-one system, with the option of its APS FlexCam, offering similar camera capabilities. Both products feature flexible wiring options, including Power-Over-Ethernet (PoE+) support. The devices are also FDA-registered Class I medical devices and are able to integrate with TVs and Interactive Patient Console (IPC) systems within patient rooms.

The Signify View

The product launches mark another significant step for Caregility as one of the more established vendors within the high-acuity telehealth market, particularly as it operates as an enterprise telehealth vendor with applications in all four segments in which Signify Research segments the market: tele-ICU, episodic virtual clinical care, virtual nursing and tele-observation.The devices integrate into Caregility’s virtual care platform Caregility Cloud, combining three tiers of clinical support – bedside care, virtual encounters and AI services. The update to Caregility’s Adaptive Telehealth Edge Devices’ suite will ensure its telehealth endpoint systems are kept up to date with the multiple software updates it announced during 2023. AI-enhanced solutions within its Caregility Cloud platform were initially unveiled at HIMSS23, including augmented continuous observation developed into its iObserver application, designed to detect adverse changes in patient movement. These provide alerts to clinical staff, continuous patient vital sign and motion capture, alongside ambient clinical intelligence algorithms which generate documentation from live clinician and patient conversations for patient’s EHRs.

Caregility’s virtual care programs and software enhancements have been developed by leveraging an extensive partner ecosystem, including both established vendors within the high-acuity telehealth market such as Philips and Hicuity Health, and start-up companies. Its 2021 partnership with PeraHealth (now owned by SpaceLabs) is an earlier example of its partnership approach enhancing its virtual care offering, having integrated PeraHealth’s Rothman Index to enable at-risk patient identification via real-time clinical surveillance to support earlier detection of concerning patient behaviour. The aforementioned AI-enhancements in 2023 followed a similar approach, with partnerships established with AI-innovation organisations Abridge, Ouva and Xandar Kardian all joining the Caregility Cloud Ecosystem.

The announcement follows the notable trend of increasing AI utilization within telehealth applications, as highlighted in Signify Research’s Telehealth – High-Acuity – World 2023 report. Often, deployment of conventional AV monitoring systems has proven to be simplistic or error-prone, leading to issues such as platforms unable to decipher between normal or concerning behaviour, or the potential to overlook critical movements in inpatient settings. The inability to accurately assess patient movements has the risk of producing false-positives or ‘nuisance alarms’, while the reverse issue (false negatives) poses the potentially serious risk of missing dangerous movements. The introduction of these new camera systems by Caregility directly addresses these issues. Similar deployments have been seen within the high-acuity telehealth market previously, such as Amwell’s partnership with end-to-end telehealth and virtual healthcare delivery platform provider Solaborate to leverage its ‘hellocare’ solution into Amwell’s Converge Platform and home TV Carepoint devices. At the time, the partnership was advertised as supporting the expansion of healthcare delivery capabilities across the care continuum, from episodic to longitudinal care.

Changing Strategy

The example of Caregility and Amwell reflect the changing strategy and requirements of health systems beyond traditional clinical examination/medical support and tele-ICU applications, arising largely from staffing shortages, financial constraints and in-hospital capacity limitations. Historically, endpoint solutions have been departmental, siloed point-focused products (hardware-centric), however, enterprise-scale solutions with a focus on platform-centric and configurable workflows have become increasingly prominent. As the global virtual-nursing and tele-observation markets continue to act as the primary drivers of high-acuity telehealth, vendors must optimize their offerings towards continuous monitoring solutions, particularly as providers look to address wider areas of coverage through a single provider.

Deployments of Caregility’s new class of adaptive telehealth devices at OhioHealth, which has recently installed 66 APS100 Pro telehealth devices and UMass Memorial Heath, which will install the APS200 device into its new 72-bed inpatient facility, highlight the expansion of potential use-cases, with plans to leverage the devices for a number of applications, including e-sitting, virtual rounding, patient-family communication and tele-ICU care. This previous insight highlighted the launch of a similar AI-powered virtual inpatient monitoring deployment at Emory Healthcare using Andor Health’s ThinkAndor solution. Though continuous monitoring solutions are relatively nascent telehealth applications compared to tele-ICU and episodic virtual clinical care, Signify Research expects similar product developments and healthcare provider program launches to be announced, as it pertains to virtual nursing and tele-observation.

Conclusion

As value-based care (VBC) models become more prominent, both in the US and globally, the overarching aim of telehealth vendors such as Caregility is to support both the transition to, and scaling of hybrid models of healthcare delivery. The transition towards 24/7 continuous monitoring solutions and virtual workflows will be pivotal in alleviating resource strains, particularly nursing and intensivist shortages. The utilization of modern camera systems and peripherals, such as Caregility’s new product suite, leveraging features such as edge computing, varied connectivity options, AI capabilities and integration into EMR and Clinical Decision Support (CDS) platforms, will reduce the need for in-person one-to-one sitters by transitioning towards remote one-to-many observation models and enable bedside clinical staff to focus on more critical tasks.

Related Research

Telehealth – High-Acuity – World – 2023

Signify Research’s report “Telehealth – High Acuity – World – 2023” builds on their 2022-edition and will provides a data-centric and global outlook of the market. The report blends primary data collected from in-depth interviews with healthcare professionals and technology vendors, to provide a balanced and objective view of the market.

About Hamir Harbham

Hamir joined Signify Research in 2022 as a Market Analyst within the Digital Health team focusing on telehealth, value-based care IT and EHR/EMR. He holds a BSc in Economics having graduated from Loughborough University in 2022.

About the Digital Health Team

Signify Research’s Digital Health team provides market intelligence and detailed insights on numerous digital health markets. Our areas of coverage include electronic medical records, telehealth & virtual care, remote patient monitoring, high-acuity clinical information systems, patient engagement IT, health information exchanges, value-based care IT and Gen-AI. Our reports provide a data-centric and global outlook of each market with granular country-level insights. Our research process blends primary data collected from in-depth interviews with healthcare professionals and technology vendors, to provide a balanced and objective view of the market.

About Signify Research

Signify Research provides healthtech market intelligence powered by data that you can trust. We blend insights collected from in-depth interviews with technology vendors and healthcare professionals with sales data reported to us by leading vendors to provide a complete and balanced view of the market trends. Our coverage areas are Medical Imaging, Clinical Care, Digital Health, Diagnostic and Lifesciences and Healthcare IT.

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