Vocera Platform

Release Notes - Version

Updated: August 7, 2020

About the Vocera Platform

The Vocera Platform optimizes patient safety by helping clinicians make real-time decisions and communicate instantly in critical situations; it is the intelligent ecosystem that connects all the people and information needed to deliver patient care.

With the intelligence of the Vocera Platform, clinicians can quickly determine what to prioritize next and close the loop faster with secure messaging, phone calls, and alert and alarm notifications—all in one place. You can locate people quickly, collaborate productively, and reduce the noise, using the device that fits your workflow—the Vocera Vina smartphone app, the V-Series Smartbadge, or the B-Series Badge. The Vocera Platform enables the flow of meaningful, actionable information between people and systems and allows it to be received when, where, and how it’s needed, keeping the patient at the center of care.

In addition, the Vocera Platform now offers simplified deployment, maintenance, and administration, as well as a smaller footprint requiring fewer servers.

Use this document in conjunction with the following Vocera Vina and Vocera Smartbadge Release Notes:

What's New

This section summarizes the new features in this release.

What's New in Vocera Platform

This release includes enhancements to several areas of the Vocera Platform.

Web Console Enhancements

This release provides the following enhancements to the Vocera Platform Web Console:

  • Patient context is now available in Vina Web.

    When you are creating a conversation in the Vina Web, you can now specify a patient as the context of the conversation.

  • Alerts are now supported in the Vina Web.

    The Vina Web now supports the ability to send and receive alerts, which enables you to respond to urgent or important situations immediately. Alerts can be related to patients assigned to you, or can be unrelated to a specific patient.

    Here is some of the functionality that alerts provide:

    • View alerts using both menu and desktop notifications.

      Alerts are indicated using the menu and desktop notifications, and this ensures that you are made aware that you have received an alert even if you are not actively using the Vina Web at the time that the alert arrives.

    • View alerts based on priority.

      Alerts are displayed uniquely based on normal, high, or urgent priority. Each alert is color-coded based to indicate the type of alert priority.

      On your screen, alerts and conversations are displayed in the following order:

      1. Unread alerts or urgent-priority mass alerts (displayed first).
      2. Alerts and conversations with unsent, unacknowledged, or unread messages.
      3. Read and accepted alerts and conversations (displayed last)
    • Receive automatic invitations to join alerts.

      When you receive an alert, you can choose to accept the alert and join a conversation with other recipients who received or accepted the alert invitation. You can also choose to decline the alert, or you can view the details of the alert before deciding to accept or decline it.

    • Create common alerts using a template.

      If your facility has standard alert types that it generates regularly, you can define templates that enable you to generate these alerts quickly. Templates can be configured to specify the patient or location that is related to the alert.

  • Patient data display is now restricted.

    You can now configure your system to prevent unauthorized users from viewing sensitive patient data. Users that belong to specified groups cannot view patient data, but can only view patient locations. This ensures that patient information is not displayed.

  • Hiding user's home departments.

    System administrator can now configure the system to hide the user's home department. When a user starts a new chat or call, or manages favorites, the user's home department is not displayed at the top of the list in the Vina smartphone app or on the Vina Web.

  • Groups can now display subgroups.

    When you click a group name to display its members in the Vocera Vina smartphone app or on the Vina Web, you may see one or more subgroups. You can click on a subgroup name to display the members of that subgroup.

  • Upload profile photo to your My Profile page.

    You can now add or change your profile photo on your My Profile page. You cannot edit your profile photo if it is uploaded to the system through your organization's active directory integration.

  • Notes field for Groups and Users.

    System administrator can now enter notes with information on the Group membership and permissions. This may be useful when a new person is assigned the system administrator role. Similarly, they can also add notes to for a specific user in the system.

  • Ability to clone templates.

    You can now create templates with matching data using the clone template feature. You no longer need to spend your valuable time to manually add the same data multiple time to create new templates.

  • Tracking feature usage analytics.

    Vocera Platform can now send feature usage analytics data from the web and mobile clients to the cloud. System administrators can disable usage analytics if this feature is not desired.

    Note: Feature usage analytics doesn't track any personal data.

  • Upload log files to the server.

    When you are logged into the Vina Web, you can now upload a log file of your activity to the server. This can help you identify any problem that occurs.

  • Group members can now add and remove themselves from a group.

    In Vocera Vina, Group members with the right set of permissions can add or remove themselves from a group.

  • Custom Preset Options for Presence Status.

    You can create custom preset options and select one of these options to display as your presence status.

    A custom preset option is a presence status setting that allows a user to specify the presence state (available or unavailable) with some customized information. System administrators can create custom preset options for users in a Facility. Users can scroll through the available preset options and click or tap to choose the option that they want.

Voice Experience Enhancements

This release provides the following features:

  • Missed calls are not shown when All or Offline condition is selected to forward a call.

    When the call gets forwarded to a destination through Call Forwarding > Forward When > All or Offline options, users do not see a missed call entry in the call log.
  • By default, the Favor Frequently Called option is disabled for users and departments.

    On the Settings > System Configuration > Preferences page of the Vocera Platform Web Console, Favor Frequently Called is set to None by default. You can enable it for users or departments.

What's New in Vocera Platform 6.1.0

This release includes enhancements to several areas of the Vocera Platform.

Voice Experience Enhancements

This release provides parity with voice experience features implemented through Vocera Voice Server 5.3.2, including the following:

  • Announcing phone numbers for incoming calls.

    When Announce Caller's Name After Tone is enabled in the Genie Settings section of User Defaults in the Vocera Platform Web Console, the Genie announces the caller's name, or if no name is available, the phone number.

  • Announcing group name when a message is sent to a group.

    When a message is sent to a group, the Genie announces the group name and the sender of the message. For example, the Genie may say, "You have a message for Med Surge Nurse from Charles Parker".

  • Ability to initiate or schedule a Code Lavender® event and send reminders for it.

    A Code Lavender event helps clinical staff members to continue after being involved with a difficult case, diagnosis, or loss. Hospital staff often feel fatigue, despair, and negative emotions after an unwelcome outcome, due to their growing attachment with a patient. A Code Lavender event helps hospital employees regain the mental and emotional strength to cope with these challenging situations.

    New voice commands to support this feature include "Schedule Code Lavender for <group name>>", "Start Code Lavender for <group name>>", "Delete Code Lavender Reminder for <group name>>", and "Delete All Code Lavender Reminders".

  • Automatically add doctor prefix to alternate spoken names.

    The Doctor Prefix field in the Speech Recognition section of Manage > Users obviates the need to create an alternate spoken name for a user who has the title of "Doctor".

  • A facility-level setting to control the user of Easter Eggs.

    Administrators can enable or disable the ability to use Easter Eggs commands for each facility.

  • Intelligent backoff strategies for Call, Broadcast, Add me to group, and Record Message commands.

    Intelligent command backoff offers additional help to users when the Genie fails to recognize the names of recipients of common voice commands.

  • Commands to lead you through mindfulness sessions of varying lengths.

    Mindfulness is a type of meditation that increases your awareness and improves your attention; it can reduce stress, sharpen concentration skills, and contribute toward your overall mental and physical health.

    Use the Play Mindfulness command to take a mindfulness break with a guided meditation of 30 seconds, one minute, or five minutes. This feature is enabled by default.

  • Automatic prompting for users to record names that are frequently spelled.

    The Genie interactively offers to learn the name of users if you spell it frequently when using the Call command. The Genie plays a prompt offering to learn the name that you spelled when you next log in.

  • Prompt to Play Unread Messages at Logout.

    When a user logs out, the Genie asks if you want to play unread messages before the logout occurs. This reminder is useful because messages are often not played during a busy day, and then forgotten.

  • The ability to schedule reminders for other users and groups, and the ability to schedule reminders for yourself.

    Reminders may be either recurring and non-recurring and can be scheduled through a device or the Vocera Platform Web Console.

  • Updated prompts when transferring a login from a device to the mobile app.

    When a logged-in user switches from a device to the app, the prompt now indicates that the user is being transferred to another device rather than being logged out.

  • Optional voice PIN authentication to play messages.

    Badge users can now define a Voice PIN (Personal Identification Number) that must be spoken before playing messages. The PIN requirement is set by the administrator for individual users or groups.

Web Console Enhancements

This release provides the following enhancements to the Vocera Platform Web Console:

  • First release of the Vocera Platform Staff Assignment application.

    Staff Assignment allows an individual such as a HUC or a clinical system such as Epic to populate room/bed locations with clinical staff assignments, making them available to the Vocera system for use in communication and the delivery of clinical events.

  • Tiered administration permissions, enabling system administrators to delegate specific responsibilities to other users.

    Using tiered administrators distributes the administrative maintenance, allowing system administrators to perform more complex tasks while tiered administrators handle the more routine maintence.

  • Ability to disable a user account through the Vocera Platform Web Console.

    Disabling an account is useful in situations when a user is temporarily not available. When the account is disabled, the user's name and alternate spoken names are removed from the system grammar, improving speech recognition; in addition, disabled users do not decrement your overall user count for licensing purposes.

  • The Device Monitor now provides status information for all logged-in devices.

    The Device Monitor the name of the logged-in user, the IP address of the device, and for users running the Vocera Vina application, the type of mobile device in use.

  • Message templates for the Vina Web.

    Templates allow you to send emergency messages or other messages quickly, as values for many of the fields in the message have already been supplied.

  • Browser-based mini-applications available to end users who have the appropriate permissions:

    • My Profile

      The My Profile application allows users to view and customize profile information, settings, and preferences related to Vocera devices and mobile applications.

    • My Workflow

      By default, the My Workflow application provides access to a set of workflows for four defined user roles: End User, Charge Nurse/Department Secretary, Super User, and Administrator. These default roles allow users to efficiently perform their responsibilities from a menu displayed in a web browser. System administrators can rename these roles, modify their workflows, and add additional roles/workflows.

Server-Side Enhancements

This release provides the following server-side enhancements:

  • Server-side support for Vocera Smartbadge.

    The Vocera Platform has now extended its support to the full range of Vocera clients: the touch-screen enabled Smartbadge, the voice-controlled Badge, and the Vocera Vina mobile application.

  • Support for newly introduced features in the Vocera Vina mobile app.

    See the Vocera Vina iOS or Android Release Notes for a complete list of new application features.

  • Support for Vocera SIP Telephony Gateway running directly on the Vocera Platform server.

    The Vocera Platform now provides a minimal IT footprint by running the voice service, workflow engine, database, and telephony gateway on the same machine.

  • Integration with the Vocera Analytics product.

    Vocera Analytics provides visibility to traffic passing through the Vocera Platform. Access to Vocera Analytics is available through the Vocera Platform Web Console.

What's New in Vocera Platform 6.0.0

Version 6.0.0 is the initial release of the Vocera Platform, which unifies the heritage Vocera Voice Server 5.x and the Engage Server 5.x product lines in a single Linux appliance.

This release includes the following features:

What's Fixed

The following list contains fixes and improvements made to the Vocera Platform.

What's Fixed in the Vocera Platform Release

The following issues are fixed in the Vocera Platform product release.

Platform Issues

Web Console Issues

What's Fixed in the Vocera Platform 6.1.0 Release

The following issues are fixed in the Vocera Platform 6.1.0 product release.

Platform Issues

Web Console Issues

What's Fixed in the Vocera Platform 6.0.0 Release

The following issues are fixed in the Vocera Platform 6.0.0 product release.

Known Issues

This section contains a list of known product issues and limitations in the Vocera Platform.

Known Issues in Vocera Platform

Platform Issues

Known Issues in Vocera Platform 6.1.0

This section provides information about known product defects and limitations in theVocera Platform 6.1.0.

Web Console Issues

Platform Issues

Deletion Issues