Updated: 07/25/2014 23:41

CGH launches first phone app for nurses communicate with dialect-speaking patients



CGH launches first phone app for nurses communicate with dialect-speaking patients

Changi General Hospital has launched a new phone application to help nurses to communicate with dialect speaking patients. 

Called the Integrated Healthcare Communicator or iCOM, the app contains a hundred Cantonese phrases on instructions for medication, medical procedures and nursing advice, which are specific to the wards. 

CGH says this is to help its younger nurses who are not conversant in dialects to communicate with elderly patients. 

Deputy Director of Nursing Informatics, Wong Kok Cheong, explains how the app works. 

"The application is a smart phone app that can be downloaded onto their smart phones and then they can open it and choose the category that the phrases that they want to communicate with patients, choose a language and play it to the patient. If the patient still have difficulty in understanding, we'll use the visual display to show them."

The app, which costs some $10,000, was developed by a team of nine nurses from CGH and external partners. 

It's supported by the Eastern Health Alliance's Centre for Innovation. 

The app has been piloted in two wards since March and it will be rolled out to all CGH nurses in August. 

Currently the app can only be downloaded onto Android phones. 

CGH says there are future plans to develop an iOS platform for nurses using iPhones. 

There are also plans to add more learning phrases and expand the range of dialects to Hokkien, Hakka or Hainanese. 

Courses in conversational Hokkien have already been made available to staff.

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