When looking for silver linings in the cloud of the COVID-19 pandemic, there are the positive gains made in the use of telehealth, to minimize the risk of exposure to frontline care workers and patients alike. In this realm, Life365 is continually adding new solutions to help solidify the embrace of virtual care and make the concept of Hospital@Home a reality.
The pandemic pressured clinicians and patients to think differently about the use of technology, utilizing smart phones and computers for virtual visits with healthcare professionals – reducing likely exposure to the virus, sure to be found in crowded waiting rooms. Now people have become accustomed to this new way of consuming healthcare — remotely from home via telehealth video visits instead of seeing doctors face-to-face — conveniently, on their terms.
The pandemic spurred the already growing demand for remote care. The evolution of telehealth technology and new reimbursement has caused major channels to emerge in the industry. Health systems need to scale their ability to connect with large, growing and diverse populations of patients to stay relevant. Whereas health systems, historically, acquired new patients from surrounding communities, the new immense telehealth channels are reaching into those same communities to competitively cherry-pick patients. Health systems are left scrambling to find new ways to bring new patients into their doors — either in-person or, more efficiently, through the “Digital Front Door.”
Innovative health systems are looking for a leg up to quickly make this digital connection. White Plains Hospital (NY) is one that has jump-started its initiatives by integrating to the Life365 Virtual Care Platform. One connection provides an array of solutions to enable Hospital@Home, bringing patients at home the same services they’d receive inside the clinic or hospital — like remotely collecting vitals such as weight, oxygen saturation, blood pressure and EKG. Analytic system integration is another piece of the puzzle, enhancing workflow optimization by flagging out-of-range vitals, so clinicians can direct their focus to patients who require attention, intervening with corrective action and avoiding costly ER episodes and admissions.
Kent Dicks is CEO of Life365.