17 June 2024

Itemedical responds early to new developments and is open to collaborations, which contributes to high-quality care.

Sami Akrout, ICU nurse and application manager PDMS MetaVision, Maasstad Hospital, Rotterdam

Innovation is an important spearhead of Maasstad Hospital in improving the quality of care. That is why this Rotterdam hospital supports innovative developments that give a positive impulse to patient care. An aspiration that has been connecting the Maasstad Hospital and itemedical as a software developer for more than 24 years. Sami Akrout, ICU nurse and application manager of PDMS MetaVision, is a fervent supporter of this innovative collaboration. Partly due to his commitment and enthusiasm, our paths crossed on this path. We look back with Sami on this collaboration but also ahead to the future..

24 years of innovation in Maasstad Hospital

Since 2000, Maasstad Hospital has been working with itemedical to improve care. And is therefore one of the relationships from the very beginning. The installation of Mediscore ICU, a data management system, marks the start of this 24-year partnership. “Our team leader at the time purchased MediScore.” The MediScore application simplifies the contribution to the Dutch NICE (National Intensive Care Evaluation) and gives the hospital insight into the quality indicators, which benefits the quality of care. Sami: “The analytical side of my work helps me to improve the department. By looking at data, we can better plan and optimize the care for our patients. Thanks to the quality indicators, automatically calculated in Mediscore ICU, we can better estimate the need for care. Interpreting data is only possible if you are in the field yourself. That’s what makes working with itemedical so strong, because many of their employees used to work in a hospital. They speak our language and sense our needs.”

From paper to digital

In 2008, itemedical once again came across the path of the Maasstad Hospital in the search for a new PDMS system. The digitization of the paper processes within the PDMS system MetaVision was an extensive project. “Because the ICU colleagues had almost no experience with a PC and were still working on paper,” says Sami. “From the start, the collaboration with itemedical was as you would expect from a partner: with short lines of communication, direct communication and always looking for a solution.”

Achieving success together

With the implementation of MetaVision, a new world opened up for Sami. His eyes sparkle when he talks about building queries, writing scripts, merging processes, connecting data, building forms, etc. “And all this to improve the quality of care in the ICU.” If the puzzles are too complicated, he calls in the help of the itemedical team.

Sami: “Pieter Baauw is a real whiz kid in scripting. For example, I had come up with a script for insulin regulation at high or low glucose levels. I wanted to look at both the running of insulin and the protocol that the healthcare professionals use, but I couldn’t merge it, which was ultimately my goal. Pieter looked at it and within the hour he found the solution. That made me happy, because I knew how much my colleagues could benefit from this new script. Being able to switch with itemedical is valuable to me.”

Flexibility in good times and bad times

In 2020, when covid broke out, two extra emergency ICU wards were opened in Maasstad Hospital. “All places were used and colleagues from other departments helped out. Itemedical quickly adapted to this situation and expanded the ICU capacity with the use of MetaVision at the bedside. After the pandemic, the ICU department was scaled back to the pre-corona situation.” 

The itemedical team understands what our needs are and integrate the feedback into their developments.

Innovation in action

Brainstorming sessions with itemedical led to innovative solutions in Maasstad Hospital, such as a digital planning board. “The itemedical team understands what our needs are and integrates the feedback into their developments. That’s really their strength. And no more amateurish tickling on a whiteboard,” Sami adds with a laugh. He is now working with itemedical on a link between MetaVision and the infusion pumps. The itemedical software automatically registers all actions on the infusion pump and transfers them to MetaVision. Nurses no longer type registrations themselves and this reduces the risk of errors. By scanning barcodes, the system also creates a closed loop medication safety. And that benefits the patient.

Open communication is the key to success

From everything Sami says, you notice that taking care of patients, data, and pursuing a goal are his biggest motivations. The key to a successful collaboration? Good and open communication and the opportunity to brainstorm ideas together. Feedback keeps the relationship fresh, both positive and negative, it plays a crucial role. The pursuit of continuous improvement, meeting the needs of the users as closely as possible and optimising the quality of care, is something Sami greatly appreciates.

AI in healthcare

And what does Sami expect from the future? “Artificial Intelligence (AI) in healthcare! I’m looking forward to that. Because innovation does not stand still. AI and other technological developments will continue to transform healthcare, and I would like to contribute to this with my expertise.”

The best thing you can do is help people the way you wan them to help you.

Sami’s passion for healthcare

Sami’s career started in 1999 in the Clara hospital (Rotterdam) in the Intensive Care Unit. Because of his studies in Nursing, he was given the opportunity to work there. After the merger with the Zuiderziekenhuis, Sami’s workplace moved to the Maasstad Hospital, where he has worked closely with his colleagues since 2007. In addition to his work in the ICU, he is an application manager with a focus on PDMS, MetaVision and data management with MediScore. Working together on better care, that’s what appeals to Sami. “The best thing you can do is help people the way you want them to help you.” For Sami, this means personal attention for the patient and their family. A value that he likes to pass on to new colleagues. Providing emotional support to patients with severe burns, severe trauma injuries and dealing with difficult parting situations for the family, you don’t learn that at school, but you learn it by watching others do it. He is pleased when his patients recover and are allowed to go home to resume their lives. “That’s what makes my work valuable. When you have been working with your colleagues for 20 years, you understand each other with few words. Sometimes a smile or a tear is enough to understand each other.”


Curious about the added value to healthcare of MetaVision as PDMS?