"An Ounce of Prevention is Worth a Pound of Cure." Benjamin Franklin

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Sep 14, 2009

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Colorado - Northern Colorado

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"An Ounce of Prevention is Worth a Pound of Cure." Benjamin Franklin

Telehealth is a booming field within healthcare. We can now move the focus of care into the home in a way that is simple yet powerful. Remote patient monitoring systems like the Health Buddy System and the ViTel Net Kiosk from Robert Bosch Healthcare have the potential to improve overall quality of life and satisfaction for seniors by keeping them engaged, informed, and connected. In addition, because a clinician is monitoring their data on a daily basis, problems are caught early and dealt with immediately, thereby lowering the chances of serious complications, and decreasing unnecessary inpatient stays and emergency room visits.

There are several key elements to a successful home telehealth program. These include acquiring high quality and reliable equipment that is easy to use; integrating the equipment into standard operating protocols for monitoring and assessment; physician involvement in customizing of health parameters to their patient; identification of problems and outcomes, and development of interventions; and establishing an ongoing relationship with the user that encourages self-management.

In fact, telehealth.is not a stand alone system. Instead, it is a package of care that can involve a range of health care activities whose delivery is mediated via a number of different innovative information technologies. Even now, new technologies such as motion sensors are being integrated into these systems to continuously improve telehealth with the goal of greater freedom and independence for all seniors.

A quality integrated telehealth program is intended for seniors who want to live independently but value the freedom and peace of mind they can receive through telehealth. By partnering with a sophisticated 24/7 call center, trained specialists can monitor data, triage changes to a RN, and create a personal relationship with the senior beyond the emergency. Having access to a nurse when questions occur, creation of a trending report for the senior, their physician, and their loved ones, and decreasing health care costs by accessing care earlier are outcomes all those involved with the senior will also appreciate.

By helping Seniors feel more secure knowing their health problems may be caught early before they become major problems, telehealth is bringing an old adage to life: an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.

Yvonne Myers
Health Systems Coordinator
970-488-3777
Columbine Health Systems

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