Institute of Tropical Medicine Alexander von Humboldt
Using Wildix to Combat COVID: Improved Communications Fuels an Ambitious Public Health Project by the Institute of Tropical Medicine Alexander von Humboldt
When the COVID-19 pandemic hit Peru, it immediately threatened to overwhelm the nation, as the sheer scope of patients in need of treatment was poised to fill healthcare centers past their breaking point.
To counter this collapse, the Institute developed a plan that would allow for management of patients outside of hospitals, as led by the Lima facility Hospital Cayetano Heredia.
Dr. Krapp explained, “We started leading this initiative to set up a system that would allow follow-up and management of the patients that were having less severe symptoms and could be managed at home, so we could try to relieve the pressure in the hospitals.”
Setting up such a system, however, would require a robust telecommunications system, one that could reliably function for a team of volunteers who create appointments and manage follow-ups with patients. It would also have to operate effectively for the physicians themselves, who were at risk of infection and could not be physically present at patients’ homes.
Deployment time and ease of use were also factors in the solution to use, as the hospital couldn’t afford to spare much technical staff. Worse, the hospital also faced the pressing time limit of COVID infections becoming too numerous to feasibly treat and contain.
The project was, in a sense, an application of the principles of smart working, yet with higher stakes and a more pressing timeframe.
From its inception, one of the solutions driving this project was Wildix, as recommended by Peruvian Wildix Partner Infobox. As Daniel Pizarro, CEO of Infobox, explained:
“What we needed was to have a virtual platform so as to keep the physicians safely at home, because they were not able to go anywhere due to their high risks. So having this connection just through the internet on their computers and not having to use their own phones, was very helpful for us. They were very happy with the system from the very beginning.”
She continued, “Wildix would allow us to follow the patients and everything. It was a project we carried out over about one to two months, through dynamic work. We spent one month just setting up all the flows and validating questions for the patients and everything like that.”
Once it was fully installed, this instance of the Wildix system was able to connect a team of 10 volunteers and nine physicians to the base of less-symptomatic patients.
“These are doctors that are hired by the hospital but have high risk conditions, so they cannot be physically with patients,” Dr. Krapp clarified. “So we gave them the opportunity to participate in this project, following patients from home safely with this tool.”
Being a system that enables remote working, usa“It was very user friendly,” Dr. Krapp also related. “Most of [the physicians] were older than 65 — that’s why they were staying at home — and we did a very short tutorial and they learned how to use it very quickly.”bility was key to this setup. Fortunately, the Wildix installation posed few if any problems in regard to user interface.
Through the use of this platform and the efforts of volunteers, the Institute and the nine doctors have been able to attend to an average of 50 to 55 patients a day, all safely from home and entirely through a browser-based web connection. At time of writing, the system has allowed for 1,200 interactions with patients and over 300 individual patients seen. (This is in addition to a follow-up period for each patient lasting 10 to 14 days.)
The solution was implemented by Wildix Partner
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