Connected Health Plus: Making Good Even Better

by Chuck Parker, HIMSS member, and Executive Director, Continua Health Alliance

Good: Personal connected health, that is, the use of telecommunications and health management devices to collect and share an individual patients’ physiologic and lifestyle data. 

Personal connected health:

  • puts patients at the center of care;
  • allows patients and providers to communicate more regularly;
  • encourages patients to understand and monitor their personal health data, and
  • facilitates both personalized and population-level healthcare.

Many remote, home-monitoring programs are showing how personal connected health can achieve better clinical outcomes than traditional care, by providing regular access to disease metrics that helps patients take charge of their wellness, and stay out of the hospital.

The Whole System Demonstrator Programme enrolled 3,200 patients with diabetes, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, or heart failure, and provided them with telehealth monitoring. The intervention group had

  • 44.5% fewer mortalities;
  • 10.8% hospital admissions;
  • 14.7% emergency room visits;
  • 20.6% fewer ER admissions;
  • hospital bed days 14.3% lower per head; and
  • an estimated cost savings of 7.7% in the intervention group.

Now that’s good.

Better: What could be better, you might ask? Adopting plug-and-play technologies as the standard for personal connected health, which can further improve efficiencies in healthcare interventions, such as The Whole System Demonstrator Programme.

Simple connectivity removes an undeniable hurdle for healthcare technology buyers and consumers. The availability of plug-and-play technologies will drive innovation by consumers seeking better health self-management.

For healthcare technology buyers, the benefits of plug-and-play are many:

  • new ability to repurpose devices;
  • extending the ROI on technology purchases;
  • reduced time and cost for technology implementations; and
  • decreased maintenance on legacy systems and technologies, to name a few.

Early evidence shows that designing for plug-and-play is also a value for the tech industry, bringing time and cost advantages that more than justify the effort. That’s even better.

Please join me for a presentation on connected health and the efficiencies of plug-and-play technologies at the HIMSS Virtual Briefing, “The IHE International Academy for Interoperability: A Healthcare IT Virtual Learning Network” on Thursday, Nov. 15.

About Adam Bazer

Adam Bazer is Sr. Manager, Health Information System for HIMSS. In this role, his main focus is on the HIMSS HIT Usability community and committee. Prior to this role, Adam worked as Manager, Digital Events for HIMSS Media. His areas of responsibility included the HIMSS Virtual Events and HIMSS Webinars. Adam has served HIMSS in other capacities as well, including as Manager, Annual Conference Education, responsible for the call for proposal process and speaker management of education sessions at the HIMSS Annual Conference. You can reach Adam directly at abazer@himss.org
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