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Studies confirm RPM can be vital for providers and patients

At one time or another, every physician has had that feeling that flustered young parents often experience: I can’t be everywhere at once! But while it remains impossible to be physically in two places at once, today’s healthcare IT offers the next best thing — tools for Remote Patient Monitoring (RPM) that can deliver critical information about patients in near real-time.

The concept of RPM is hardly new. Back in 2005, for example, a study published in the Annals of Internal Medicine found that treating elderly patients through a “hospital at home” program helped reduce average hospital stays from 4.9 to 3.2 days.

The COVID-19 pandemic spurred further development of remote medicine modalities, including RPM, because of the need to rapidly ramp up telehealth appointments in the face of office closures. When remote visits proved as effective as in-office visits for many purposes, many providers became convinced of the practicality and value of remote care.

A natural outgrowth of value-based care

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services have promoted RPM as part of the shift in American healthcare from fee-for-service to value-based models. Their goals include better management of the many chronic conditions responsible for so much healthcare spending.

By having patients use wearable devices — including blood pressure cuffs, blood glucose monitors, heart monitors, and activity trackers — today’s physicians can be alerted whenever a patient’s vital signs exceed normal ranges, suggesting an increased risk of an adverse health event.

The results? Timely interventions, fewer hospitalizations, lower overall costs, and better medical outcomes — including saving lives.

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Benefits of the healow RPM solution

The healow® RPM module is a data-driven, digital ecosystem that gathers physiological data from patients’ wearable health devices to gain insights, interpret health trends, and capture time-based activities.

By giving providers better and more timely access to their patients’ data, the module helps deepen insight and promote better medical decisions. The healow RPM module has an intuitive, user-friendly design and is fully integrated with the eClinicalWorks® Electronic Health Record.

Key benefits include:

  • Capture time-based activities and streamline workflows
  • Gain insights and interpret health trends
  • Stage proactive interventions for at-risk patients
  • Reduce burdens on clinical staff, thus acting as a “staff multiplier”
  • Provide in-depth reporting and automated billing

Studies confirm the value of RPM

All those benefits sound great, but what do the data show? A recap of RPM studies published in February by mHealth Intelligence showed a broad range of benefits, including:

  • COVID-19 patients enrolled in an RPM program had an ER visit rate of 11.4%, a hospitalization rate of 9.4% within 30 days of enrollment, and a 30-day mortality rate of just 0.4% — all considered excellent outcomes when compared to the general population of patients with COVID-19.
  • A Georgia study of diabetic patients found that those who received care through RPM and telehealth saw reductions of 2% in their A1c levels after three months.
  • A study of cancer patients conducted by Utah’sHuntsman Cancer Institute found that patients in an RPM program were 58% less likely to have an extended hospital stay.
  • Researchers at Penn Medicine who followed 242 patients with knee or hip replacements found that the group enrolled in an at-home program that used telehealth and RPM tools had a fourfold reduction in rehospitalizations when compared to those using an in-person rehab program.

Ready to learn more with a demo? Contact us today at RPMsales@healow.com.

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