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Software robots will disseminate patient test results to free up nurses

Technician processing tests

UiPath is launching a pro bono automation project with the Mater Misericordiae University Hospital. The initiative will see software robots assigned to the Infection Prevention and Control (IPC) Department at the Mater. This development will significantly reduce the administrative strain placed upon the department by multidrug resistant organisms or viruses such as Covid-19, enabling IPC nurses to spend more time with patients. The project will see the Mater offered free trial robot licenses for the IPC Department until the end of the year.

With data being automated through software robots, the information will be processed in a fraction of the current time, disseminating patient results in minutes. It will save the infection control department 3 hours per day, 18 hours per week and 936 hours a year which they can now spend managing the current Covid-19 pandemic.

As a result of Covid-19, the Mater expects to receive hundreds of swabs and microbiology tests in the coming months which the software robots can assist in rapid processing. The results can then be distributed to healthcare workers rapidly and essential infection prevention and control measures can be put into action.

Jincy Jerry, Assistant Director of Nursing, Infection Prevention and Control, MMUH, said: “Given that IPC nurses spend close to 30% of their day with administrative tasks, for the past few months I have been looking at ways to make software robots part of our daily jobs. With the COVID-19 pandemic unfolding now, it is crucial that all frontline staff are freed up as much as possible to spend time with patients and deal with this outbreak, rather than being in front of computers.”
“Not only will automation help with this, but it will also take the strain off the hospital as it continues to process huge amounts of more routine patient data in addition to Covid-19 specific information.”

“As we’ve already seen, alongside the public playing their part in physical distancing, fast diagnosis and appropriate self-isolation are crucial to preventing the spread of COVID-19. We’re confident that the project we’re embarking on will help mitigate the huge strain this outbreak is putting on healthcare organisations – not just in MMUH, but across Ireland.”

Mark O’Connor, Public Sector Director Ireland at UiPath, said: “Infection Prevention & Control is critical to help people stay healthy, and while COVID-19 is top of mind, this project will continue to deliver benefits long term. At this time of heightened stress and anxiety, it’s vital to free up doctors and nurses’ time for patients wherever it can be done.”

“Robotic process automation minimises, if not removes, the need for people to carry out repetitive, rules-based admin work – speeding up processes and ensuring they’re error-free. With a robot for every nurse approach, essential frontline staff will be freed to be nurses and not system administrators, being able to focus more on the quality of care – which can make a real difference when it comes to treating patients in times of need.”

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