By Dr. David Green, MD. Pulmonary Medicine, Emerson Hospital
The promise and effectiveness of technology enhanced in-home care is tremendous. Through home monitoring, we are able to identify subtle changes in symptoms and behaviors that patients may not recognize themselves. This could be lower oxygen levels, a change in pulse, or even just signs of fatigue. In many cases the changes required are obvious and simple, such as taking an extra pill for a period of time, and do not need the attention of a physician. In other cases, these changes are critical to the patient’s well-being. By recognizing these critical changes promptly, treatment can be initiated to avoid major exacerbations that could lead to hospitalization. Whether minor or major, early intervention is crucial to helping the patient stay as healthy as possible, avoid the need to visit the doctor, or more importantly, the hospital emergency room.
Focused attention is particularly needed for the chronically ill or individuals with complex health conditions. These patients account for 75% of population medical costs. Today, patients are discharged from the hospital earlier than in years past. They very often are discharged and go home before being fully recovered. The more “eyes” on these patients, the better. A system such as Ibis, from Senscio Systems, is so powerful because it recognizes changes in patterns, more than just one symptom and interprets the change though the use of artificial intelligence. Ibis communicates a protocol to the patient, to the care coach, and/or to the physician. This leads to better care and better outcomes.
Monitoring and reacting is not “rocket science”. An artificial Intelligence driven system, built on a platform of years of medical experience, is almost like having a medical resident in the home at all times. Adding a level of personal coaching makes the care process run smoother.
For years we have seen that providing in-home nursing and support with home-care nurses has resulted in better outcomes for those with complex health issues. Now, with the addition of technology along with coaches to help the patient, we have enhanced the care available to primary doctors and patients. And… it’s all done in the comfort of the home. What a great way to meld technology, coaching, and medical care for better outcomes!