What Is A Virtual Nurse and Telehealth Nursing?

Banyan's revolutionary virtual nursing and virtual care technology provides end-to-end solution for hospitals.


What is a Virtual Nurse? Virtual nurses assist hospitals and healthcare facilities to reduce the legwork of onsite nurses and see the subtle signs and symptoms that can point to status changes. They are very rarely new graduates because they need to be detail-oriented and well-versed in the nuances of patient monitoring. They effectively take 25% to 30% of administrative tasks off of bedside nurses. This liberates their time for what truly matters – providing exceptional care to patients. The result? A remarkable boost in job satisfaction and 35% reduction in turnover rates.

What is telehealth nursing? Telenursing or telehealth nursing means using technology to deliver nursing care to remote locations from any provider’s location or hospital. With telehealth nursing, patients can access their health care providers from any location.  It uses webcams, VoIP, Internet, and phone lines to deliver this remote health care over any distance. Patients connect to their healthcare provider through mobile apps, video calls, phone calls and other forms of digital communication. 
The use of telehealth technologies facilitates timely communication between the healthcare provider and the patients, and virtual nursing is still effective despite the long-distance care relationship. The core skills of virtual nurses are consistent with onsite nurses. Their responsibility is to monitor patients, while the responsibilities of onsite nurses are to deliver care and be a patient advocate for care plans.

Teamwork Matters

Virtual nurses and onsite nurses must work together to perform the highest level of care. While virtual nurses can assist with staffing difficulties, they do not replace bedside nurses altogether. The responsibilities of virtual nurses include assisting with admissions and discharges, monitoring vital signs of high-risk patients, surveying patients in real-time, and support registered nurses (RNs).

Bedside care nurses provide direct care to the patient as well as to conduct physical assessments for admissions and manage the discharge process by giving discharge instructions to patients and family. Together, virtual and onsite nurses will process documents, perform rounds on patients, respond to patients’ needs, and educating patients. When virtual nurses are used, onsite nurses can respond to emergencies while virtual nurses can maintain the regular schedule of rounds and patient monitoring. The overall goal of using virtual nursing in this way is to reduce trips to the emergency room for patients with chronic health problems.


When pilot systems were rolled out in one hospital from July 2017 to January 2018, four metrics were monitored in comparison to a baseline from October 2016 to February 2017 and goals were set in place for each metric. These metrics were readmission rate, length of stay, patient falls, and call light response (seconds).

Outcome MetricTeam GoalBaseline
(Oct ’16-Feb ’17)
Current Pilot Results
(July ’17-Jan ’18)
Readmission Rate10% decrease on average13.9%Decreased by 37.4% (8.7%)
Length of Stay11% decrease on average3.41Decreased by 12.6% (2.98)
Falls35% decrease on average2.78Decreased by 75.18% (0.69)
Call Light Response (seconds)1:230:51

 Banyan’s End-to-End Solution

Upgrade with Banyan’s Virtual Care system, an all-inclusive technology that provides end-to-end solutions for hospitals, from initial admission through discharge and transitional care. Our seamless installation process takes as little as 30 minutes per room, requiring minimal IT setup. We have dedicated technical support teams available 24/7 to ensure a smooth transition and continued assistance. There is no storage or transfer of patient data, so you can rest assured that patient information remains secure every step of the way.

With Banyan Virtual Care, we also provide customized plans with the training and support necessary to ensure successful and rapid implementation of the system, so you need not to worry about:

  • Appropriate staffing needs
  • Workflow management plans
  • Change management & support
  • Case management oversight