This is interesting when you look at what is reported below in the fact that patients prefer to use regular phones to communicate versus a free smart phone that one group was given.  I think this makes a point on education and bringing folks up to speed versus thinking they will catch on and join in.  image

What the program is doing is allowing more to live at home versus an assisted living facility if their medical conditions permit too.  The smart phones came into play specifically with getting messages on managing diabetes and again this is something that needs good implementation and software that shows value to the patient as well as the doctors and in this study it looks like the Smart Phones were not quite up there yet.  When it comes to mobile management and getting messages on a cell phone, that has to be done correctly as even myself I have thought about some of the added messages that I could be getting and you know what, I don’t want about 80% of what is out there as some of it is clutter and just too much, so again the value has to be in the hands of the patient.  I think this is much better done if the patient sees a demo and then decides by attraction that it is something they want to use rather than being force fed.  There are studies ongoing with this called participatory sensing to determine what works for many and how far it can go without being a total disruption with defeating the purpose, and this is exactly what the VA is looking at with their analytics.  BD

Participatory Sensing – Center for Embedded Networked Sensing Studies Gathering Information with Cell Phones Relative to Use and Security

WASHINGTON – The Department of Veterans Affairs plans to expand its use of information technology and telecommunications - including  mobile and landline phones and video conferencing - to deliver healthcare to aging veterans and others who suffer from chronic conditions, according to senior telehealth officials.

In fiscal year 2010, VA recorded 300,000 healthcare encounters in 36 specialty areas with the assistance of telehealth technologies, according to Adam Darkins, MD, VA's chief consultant for telehealth services, who spoke at an Oct. 12 innovation conference sponsored by West Wireless Health Institute, a wireless medical technology nonprofit researcher.

The VA has now begun to analyze data from these programs as part of a long-term goal to  change the location of care from the hospital to where the patient is, he said. The plan is ultimately to, "extend the electronic health record into the home."

Among the VA's major telehealth programs, the Care Coordination Home Program, which has 48,000 participants nationwide, enables senior veterans to continue to live at home instead of in an assisted living facility unless symptoms demand that a physician intervene.

One of its findings is that patients prefer to use their own phones as telehealth devices. Forty percent of the participants in a recent test of an application to send patients messages about their diabetes management did not even use the smart phone provided  to them.

VA expands program to bring EHRs home | Healthcare IT News


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