CHARLESTON, W.Va. – The Charleston Area Medical Center saw reduced readmissions for congestive heart failure, COPD and other chronic conditions last year after implementing TeleHealth Services’ SmarTigr interactive patient engagement and education system.
The successful strategy reversed a trend of rising readmissions at the medical center, reducing readmissions for CHF by more than 22% and COPD by almost 30%.
“We are definitely big fans of the TeleHealth solution,” said Natalie Osborne, a nurse navigator at CAMC.
The SmarTigr system integrates smart TVs, hospital software platforms and mobile apps with a library of interactive videos designed to educate patients about their care and medications. The system generates activity reports for staff to review, document and measure compliance and patient comprehension.
The four-hospital CAMC system decided in 2015 to strive toward reducing readmissions for chronic diseases, said Dr. Dan Lilly, associate chief medical officer at CAMC. That effort included making the investment in TeleHealth Services’ SmarTigr solution to standardize patient education and increase patient engagement, knowing the investment would pay off through reduced readmissions.
Once SmarTigr was integrated, CAMC developed a standard approach for educating patients about their conditions and shared disease-specific “video prescriptions.” A detailed clinical assessment is completed upon a patient’s admission, and nurse navigators coordinate care and a smooth transition after discharge to home or other facilities.
Matt Barker, vice president of marketing and interactive sales for TeleHealth Services, said the company’s experience in interactive patient engagement systems put them in a prime position to collaborate with CAMC.
“The opportunity to work together kind of presented itself to us,” he said. “To me, the results are just impressive.”
TeleHealth Services currently works with more than 2,500 hospital and health care clients throughout the U.S. Barker said the company is seeing technology impacting health care more than ever before.
“From a standpoint of the connected care model, technology plays a vital role in that, especially when educating a patient at home,” he said. “Technology can become a great equalizer between hospitals and health systems and a patient.”