Telehealth for Chronic Disease Management

Diabetes, arthritis, hypertension, lung disease, and other chronic diseases can make life difficult to manage for millions of older adults, often forcing them to give up their independence.  Telehealth has proven to increase access to care and reduce costs via teleconsultations and remote patient monitoring.  Evidence shows that telehealth can effectively improve care with patients with chronic conditions, such as was demonstrated in a fourteen year study published in 2014.  Telehealth platforms can be used to more effectively educate patients and their families, develop and share care plans, monitor symptoms, and manage medications.  West Corporation, a global provider of communication and network infrastructure services, recently conducted a survey of nearly 1,000 patients and healthcare providers in the United States.  The survey (Strengthening Chronic Care) specifically targeted patients that have at least one chronic health condition and have been hospitalized as a result of a chronic illness.  Their goal was to identify some of the problems surrounding chronic care, and what it will take to address those issues.  Here is an overview of some of their findings:

91% of patients reported needing help managing their disease.

70% of patients reported wanting more resources or clarity to help manage their chronic health condition.

66% of the patients surveyed claim they do not get valuable personalized information from their provider, but rather they receive very general information.

60% of patients feel they spend more time discussing their symptoms with healthcare providers than ways to manage their condition.

58% of patients believe two-way, at-home monitoring devices are very useful to interact with their healthcare provider, rather than a more basic one-way at-home device.

54% of patients feel a weekly or twice weekly check-in from their provider would be valuable.

50% of patients feel an at-home medical device that measures their health using sensors and sends information back to providers for an evaluation would be extremely beneficial.

39% of patients need the most help managing their condition at home and in daily life.

21% of patients feel they need 24-hour assistance managing their chronic condition.

16% of patients reported feeling motivated to make changes to improve their health after being admitted to the hospital because of chronic medical condition.

12% of patients insist their provider is doing a good job of delivering information tailored to their specific needs and condition. (Only 12% in this survey!)

There is no such thing as a standard telehealth program.  Consequently, it is extremely important to take the time to develop a telehealth strategic plan first, as there are many nuances to consider as they relate to your particular business.  Interested in in advancing your global telehealth initiatives?  Visit www.StrategicTelehealth.com.

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Contact ABISA for healthcare consultancy support or speaking engagements.

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