CHF readmissions cut 53 percent with telehealth tablet

Favorable news for the growing area of tablet-based telehealth. A six-month trial of an tablet-based telehealth system for congestive heart failure (CHF) with patients at Philadelphia-area Penn Medicine’s (University of Pennsylvania) post-discharge program reduced readmissions from an already low 8 percent to 3.8 percent, a 53 percent positive change, versus the national average of 19.5 percent. The provided 4G tablet+app program through Health Recovery Systems is used by the patient for an average 85 days. He or she sends vital signs, symptoms, medication information (including side effects) to a nurse care coordinator; the app on the tablet provides coaching via patient education, instructional videos and individualized self-care plans coordinated with the telehealth nurse on the program. The program dramatically lowered readmissions to where the Penn spokesperson stated that “in 6 of the last 12 months we have had zero thirty day readmissions.” What’s not in the release is the size of the testing sample. However, UPenn’s confidence is evident as Penn announced expansion using the HRS system to COPD, dementia, and cirrhosis. A disappointment on the website is lack of specifics on their program, even down to the tablet they are using, which appears to be a standard 7″ from the pictures. Business Wire, FierceMobileHealth

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