Fortis’ SL Raheja Hospital launches ‘The Vocalizer’ for ICU patients
Many patients in the ICU have an endotracheal tube that takes away their ability to speak even though they are conscious
Fortis’ SL Raheja Hospital, Mahim recently unveiled the ‘The Vocalizer’ for patients, an application that helps connect with the patients in the ICU when they can barely talk and move. The brainchild of OncoSurgeon Dr P Jagannath, this app developed at Fortis’ SL Raheja Hospital itself, will now enable patients in the ICU to communicate with their caregivers and family members far more effectively.
Many patients have an endotracheal tube hampering their ability to communicate even though they are conscious. The ‘Vocalizer’ also aids many patients who’ve undergone surgery, who cannot communicate appropriately post-op. Before this advancement in medical communication spectra, caregivers in the hospitals traditionally used generic pre-written notes that helped the patient to communicate but at times those weren’t sufficient since special needs had to be catered to; there was an urgent need to bride this communication gap.
Dr P Jagganath, Oncosurgeon at SL Raheja Hospital, Mumbai, explained how the app works, saying, “Many patients in the ICU have an endotracheal tube that takes away their ability to speak even though they are conscious. In several cases, we see patients are not able to speak after surgery. The app offers visuals with voiceovers for as many as 60 possible situations in the ICU. This is an effort to enable better communication between the patients and their families as well as the staff in the ICU.”
Dr Sanjith Saseedharan, Head of ICU, Fortis S L Raheja Hospital, Mumbai, who worked alongside Dr P Jagganath to create the app, said, “The Vocalizer is a major breakthrough for us, showcasing exemplary usage of technology that can help better healthcare services across the country – this is the start of medical advancement in communication. We are happy to have taken a progressive step towards facilitating better communication between the ICU patients and their caregivers & loved ones.”
With this development, anxious relatives can also stay connected with the patient. The Vocalizer is also available for free download on both iOS and Android, and has been developed by Tata Interactive Systems supported by Crusade Against Cancer Foundation.