Remote Patient Monitoring (RPM) is quickly becoming a must-have tool in doctor’s offices. Patients with on-going illnesses or health issues are at risk. They often have multiple doctors, manage their own care and can be more susceptible to complications. Remote patient monitoring is a great way to help manage these patients.
Remote monitoring has the potential to save money, time, and lives. Here are 7 reasons why your office should consider utilizing this technology.
- Reduced hospital readmissions, fewer in-person visits. Remote patient monitoring can decrease the risk of preventable hospital admissions. A lack of communication with physicians is one of the top reasons for hospitalization among patients with chronic conditions.
- Cuts down on patients’ travel costs and infection risk. Traditional in-person visits can result in an unnecessary financial toll for families. Many may also feel that the amount of time it takes to visit the office from traveling to waiting in the office is longer than the actual visit, making the experience feel unfulfilled, unnecessary, or unsatisfying.
- Helps patients improve self management and care plan adherence. Remote patient monitoring allows individuals to focus on their self-care. Getting instructions at a doctor’s office may be forgotten once the patient leaves the office. But, having a physical device for patients to engage with becomes a constant reminder to work towards a healthy lifestyle. The conversations that occur between patients and the Care Team may also provide positive reinforcements that help patients feel supported.
- Optimizes clinical staff efficiency and combats clinical staff shortages. Reducing stress in your practice allows the staff to bring their best selves to the office. The well-being of the staff and reducing physician burnout, brought on by having too many different tasks to complete at once, should be at the forefront of all office practices. Utilizing RPM can reduce tasks that the staff typically perform in the office allowing them to better manage their schedules and responsibilities.
- Reduces cost of care for patients. We’ve already mentioned that remote patient monitoring may reduce travel costs but the reduced cost of care for patients is also important – especially if patients are living on a budget. In addition to not having a co-pay for an office visit, better health outcomes reduce the need to see specialists or hospitalization.
- Provides your office with more detailed data on patients. Having more information that you can analyze and review prior to an office visit optimizes the time you have with patients when they come in for a face-to-face meeting. You’ll have additional data to help inform your suggestions or next steps to help your patients meet their health goals.
- Improved patient outcomes. Columbia University research demonstrated that stroke survivors who received a multi-faceted care model, including Remote Patient Monitoring, called Telehealth After Stroke Care (TASC) showed improvements in “patient engagement, patient access and blood pressure levels three months after the first stroke.” See Stroke Survivors Benefit from RPM to learn more.
The biggest challenge to implementing an RPM program is finding a good vendor solution. You want this relationship to be seamless and not one that causes additional work or headaches. Be sure when you meet with vendors that you ask up front how they plan to engage with the patient’s primary care provider so there is no surprise about the patient’s participation or primary care provider’s expectations.
Overall, remote patient monitoring offers many benefits as noted above. The bottom line is that it improves access to healthcare providers and promotes long-term healthy living for patients. Making this a win-win scenario.