Distributed Architecture System for Monitoring Intensive Care Patients

M.A. Pereira, J. Pereira, A. Curra, R. Rivas, G. Baos, A. Pazos, and J. Teijeiro (Spain)


Intensive Care Unit, ICU, Medical Informatics, CORBA, MECIF, Infusion Pumps


The main goal of an Intensive Care Unit (ICU) is to stabilize patients who are in critical condition. To this end, patients’ vital signs are recorded using monitoring systems that employ different types of sensors. The attending physician analyzes these records and, based on their medical knowledge and experience, administer different medications to improve the patient’s condition. The infusion pumps used to administer these medications, as well as the monitoring devices that show the patient’s vital signs, are usually at the patient’s bedside or, in the ideal case, connected to a central control system in the ICU. This implies that the physician should be physically present in the ICU in order to oversee the decision making process. In addition, it is necessary that the physician be provided with an easy-to-use (usable) interface to the monitoring system such that the information is displayed in an optimal manner to efficiently support medical decision-making. In this paper we describe the design and implementation of a system architecture whose objective is to both capture ICU patient data using the MECIF protocol as well as to display the information to the attending physician irrespective of his/her location via mobile devices (Tablet PCs and PDAs) connected to a dedicated server. Through this remote interface, the physician will be able to visualize the patient’s vital signs and subsequently decide on the appropriate treatment course by remotely controlling the pumps that administer medication to the patient

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