Written by Jerred Ziegler.
One of every hospital’s top priorities is patient comfort. Patients are under an incredible amount of mental and physical stress, and the goal is to help them feel as relaxed as possible during a hospital stay. In some cases, however, it can be difficult for staff to determine each patient’s individual comfort needs. Many rely on nursing staff to talk to patients, but this can be time-consuming, and it’s often impossible to get to each bed in a timely manner. Ambassador Software Works in Columbus, Ohio, has developed a solution using predictive technology that analyzes patients’ potential needs based on criteria such as their condition, age or medications.
“If a nurse can predict that a patient with a particular illness will likely have trouble sleeping, he or she can offer the patient a sound conditioner, draw the shades or move them to a quiet area of the hospital,” said Tim Newcome, president and cofounder of Ambassador Software Works. “Without using our technology to predict the patient’s issue, three nights could pass before the nursing staff realizes that the patient can’t sleep.”
Ambassador Software Works’ predictive analyses are delivered on a dedicated tablet device that shows the names and locations of patients who are most likely to need certain amenities. This personalized care can improve the overall patient experience and impression of the hospital.
Newcome and his cofounder, Clayton Daley, started Ambassador Software Works in 2014 based on technology developed at The Ohio State University, whose medical facilities piloted the platform. Anchored by the analysis of 20,000 patient satisfaction surveys, the results of their tests were positive — patient satisfaction rose 16 percentage points in the target group. For the next two years, new patient dimensions were added to the system and functionality was improved. A beta version is now testing in three hospitals.
Ambassador Software Works received $100,000 in funding from Rev1 Ventures, a central regional partner of Ohio Third Frontier, which helped to expand their software and hire a firm to align the technology with hospital patient confidentiality regulations. The company now has five full-time employees who are marketing the technology to hospitals as APEX amenity.
“Customers have given us some great feedback to make our product even better, so we are continually working to make it stronger and add functions,” said Newcome.
Newcome says he couldn’t have chosen a better place than Columbus to start a business because costs are low and the resources available to entrepreneurs are unmatched.
“I didn’t realize how well-developed the entrepreneurial culture was here until I started this business,” said Newcome. “When I first came into the small business world 30 years ago, I was pretty much on my own. Now there’s a community of people, entrepreneurs and founders who all want to help each other build strong companies.”