Technology is fast changing the face of healthcare. Inundated with challenges to lower hospital readmissions and overall healthcare costs, hospitals are finding remote patient monitoring as an effective way to enhance treatment at affordable costs. A survey conducted by Spyglass Consulting Group in 2019 finds that 88% of healthcare providers participating in the survey have invested or are planning to make investments in remote patient monitoring technology.
Remote patient monitoring, in simple words, is the use of digital technologies to continually monitor a person’s health and offer care when required. Remote patient monitoring technology includes physiological monitoring (BP, heart rate, weight, glucose, and temperature, etc), medication administration or prescription monitoring, and diet and exercise tracking. It makes use of sensors, wearables, mobile devices and other healthcare equipment to record patient data and communicate it to the doctors and physicians.
Remote Patient Monitoring Applications
Remote patient monitoring is applicable in treatment or providing care for many critical ailments including-
1. Heart Ailments- Heart patients, in some cases, require continuous monitoring of their heart rates, weights, and other vitals. Expert intervention is required when the vitals cross alarming levels. In such scenarios, remote patient monitoring can be highly useful in continuously assessing the health of a patient and alerting the care team when required.
2. Diabetes and Hypertension- Patients suffering from diabetes or hypertension need continuous monitoring of blood pressure and blood sugar and quick care when the comfort levels are crossed. A remote system can be established for such patients wherein the BP and sugar readings are continuously communicated to the care team for them to prescribe medication when necessary.
3. Patients from remote areas- Accessibility to quality care is still a challenge in healthcare. There are regions where good care is still not accessible. Remote patient monitoring solutions can help patients living in those geographies to access quality care from cities.
4. Elderly- Remote monitoring can also help the elderly or people with limited mobility who require continuous monitoring post-hospital discharge. Such patients can be continuously assessed from their homes and provided care.
How Does Remote Patient Monitoring Help Hospitals?
1. Lowering Treatment Costs- Remote patient monitoring can help hospitals in lowering their treatment costs, especially for patients who require care for longer periods.
2. Operational Efficiency- Remote Monitoring can reduce ED occupancy and staff workload. It automates routine manual tasks like recording vitals, alerting physicians and medication reminders, etc.
3. Lower hospital readmissions- Payers are not comfortable with frequent readmissions. Remote monitoring can help providers assess the patient’s care requirements beforehand and decide whether it requires readmission.
4. Improved HEDIS scores- With remote patient monitoring, health providers can improve the quality of their care, influence their HEDIS quality score, and get more incentives from payers.
But There Are Challenges To Address….
The basic requirement for remote patient monitoring systems is a reliable internet connection which can be a challenge in towns and difficult terrains. Some patients, especially the elderly, may find it difficult to operate the system on their own. Then there are issues related to cybersecurity, data privacy, and data accuracy. However, as remote monitoring goes mainstream and technology adoption grows in personal lives, most of these challenges have been overcome and the idea of remote care has got wider acceptance.
As patients and payers call for value-based care, providers are adopting remote patient monitoring solutions to step up their game. But committing to remote care requires an investment of time, budget, and efforts. AppShark’s specialty healthcare services can help you build remote patient monitoring solutions specific to your needs. We leverage our deep technology expertise and experience working with leading names in the healthcare industry like Accent Care, CCT Tapes, paydhealth, and many others to help health providers solve their most pressing problems. If you have a solution in mind or are looking for the right technology solution to your problem, please connect with us at firstname.lastname@example.org and we’ll schedule a call with one of our experts at the earliest.