Telemedicine initiative connects nurses with home care patients without face-to-face visits
Winthrop-University Hospital received a $105,088 grant to participate in the New York State Department of Health's Telemedicine Demonstration Project, which will identify new technologies and help improve disease management for home care patients. Winthrop's Home Health Agency is one of 30 agencies the State approved to take part in the $4 million initiative.
Winthrop-University Hospital's home care nurses will closely work with patients to help them become acquainted with the user-friendly equipment, which monitors heart rate, oxygen saturation, weight, blood pressure, glucose levels and temperature.
Telemedicine allows patients and assigned nurses to communicate without meeting face-to-face. Through the use of telecommunications and web-based technologies, nurses retrieve daily readings patients gather via user-friendly equipment set up in their home. Telemedicine also offers the nurse secure, electronic access to medical records when an update is required.
Telemedicine equipment includes the HomMed® Sentry Monitor, an easy-to-use device that enables the patient to self-monitor heart rate, oxygen saturation, weight, blood pressure, glucose levels and temperature within three minutes. The data is electronically submitted to the nurse who manages the patients remotely seven-days-a-week in addition to scheduled visits. The regular analysis allows for the reduction of arbitrary appointments, the modification of treatment plans and early detection of other health issues that may arise.
"Telemedicine's ‘patient-centered care' approach gives patients and their family members, who may not live around the corner, the peace-of-mind in knowing that a healthcare provider is monitoring their health daily," explained Anne Calvo, Administrator and Director of Patient Services, Winthrop-University Hospital.
"It's exciting to be partnering with the State on this important project, which offers Winthrop an opportunity to evaluate the technology and provide Long Island patients with continuity of care via telemedicine."