BriefWise Pilot Overview and Results

BriefWise Product Overview

WaveSensor has developed a technology to address the challenges incontinence presents to care providers and those suffering from incontinence. The solution uses a sensor, mobile application technology, and a handheld reader to electronically detect if an incontinence event has occurred, transmitting a “wet” or “dry” signal back to the user. The WaveSensor team has chosen to focus on mobile incontinence detection as its first application – called BriefWise.

BriefWise works by adhering a sensor onto the outside of an incontinence brief. When an incontinence event occurs, a wet brief can be easily detected by a mobile reader carried by the caregiver. This ensures timely care, and the resident is disturbed only when necessary. With quick response, serious incontinence-related injuries can be mitigated. The process is more amenable to care staff, provides a better experience for residents, and has financial upside for the facility, and the family. The solution can be scaled quickly, deployed rapidly and is inexpensive.

The BriefWise Technology

BriefWise is a wearable, disposal, and mobile non-intrusive solution for the caregiver to detect an incontinent event within 2-6 feet of a resident.

 Pilot Synopsis

Commencing in December 2015, WaveSensor completed a series of pilots with the BriefWise product. The pilots included eight long-term care (LTC) communities across the Pacific Northwest and Mid-West regions. These communities included assisted living facilities (ALFs), memory care facilities, and skilled nursing facilities (SNFs). Communities ranged in size from approximately 200 to 2,000 residents and included one large national LTC community provider. This report provides an overview of the pilot process and results.

Pilot Process and Protocol

The pilot process and protocol remained relatively unchanged for the duration of the pilot program. The duration of each pilot ranged from five to 14 days, for 24 hours and over weekends, when applicable. Each pilot included between two and four resident participants. Participation was strictly voluntary and required Power of Attorney (POA) consent.

For the duration of the pilot caregivers (CNAs) were to use the BriefWise product every two hours to perform an electronic reading to determine if an incontinent event had occurred for each of the participant residents. In addition to electronically checking, CNAs also performed a standard manual check and captured the accuracy of the BriefWise reading on a data sheet. Reading results and accuracy data were collected by facility staff only. WaveSensor staff provided on-site support related to BriefWise product training for CNA staff. Upon conclusion of the pilot CNA staff were asked to complete a short survey ranking his or her experience and providing observations related to the impact of BriefWise on the resident participants.

Pilot Goals

At the beginning of each pilot WaveSensor partnered with the community to identify several measurable goals for the pilots. Sample pilot goals include the following:

  • Improve the quality of life for pilot residents, as measured by:
    • Caregiver qualitative feedback (pre and post-pilot)
    • Fewer observed behaviors, measured against historical behavioral logs and CNA feedback
    • Fewer disturbances (i.e. waking during sleep)
  • Improve the caregiver experience, as determined by pre and post-pilot surveys
  • Reduction of brief change cost, including materials and staff time, as measured by decrease in average number of daily changes and dry readings.

Pilot Results and Outcomes

Consolidated BriefWise product results and performance against pilot goals are included below.

  • Enhanced Resident Experience
    • Almost two-thirds (63%) of the time CNAs were able to electronically determine an incontinence event without disturbing a resting resident
    • Using the BriefWise product to conduct more frequent checks may increase the amount of dry brief time for residents; 50% of all readings collected indicated a "Wet" brief
  • 40% of CNA survey respondents observed fewer negative behaviors in pilot participants

  • Improved Caregiver Efficiency and Satisfaction 
    • 70% of CNA survey respondents found the product to be useful
    • 55% of CNA survey respondents indicated that using the product improved job satisfaction
  • Material and Labor Savings
    • Decrease in the cost of average daily brief changes ranged from zero to $2,000 per resident per year (Cost savings include the cost of materials required to complete a brief change, including costs associated with briefs, gloves, wipes, creams, etc.)
    • Using BriefWise resulted in an annualized average time savings of over 200 hours, or 1 FTE for every 10 users, per resident per year