Implementing Home Telemonitoring Technology

Implementing any home monitoring program is more challenging than an EHR. One big reason is that we need buy in not only from providers, but also patients.

Some challenges on the provider side are:

  1. Unproven technology
  2. Additional work (most likely without reimbursement)
  3. Change in current workflow
  4. Using real-time home data to make clinical decisions – most providers are not trained to use the wealth of data generated by home monitoring devices (nor is there enough evidence available on how to use most of this data)

Challenges on the patient side are:

  1. Privacy concerns
  2. Access to basic services to install & use the technology (e.g. telephone, internet)
  3. Access to a permanent living space (e.g. how do we monitor people who are homeless?)

Home telemonitoring technology, however, if implemented correctly, has the potential to improve patient care, reduce hospitalizations and/or clinic visits. A few ways in which telemonitoring may be useful include:

  1. Monitor clinical parameters (e.g. weight in CHF, PEFR in COPD, HbA1c in diabetes) and allow early intervention
  2. Teleconsultation services to patients who do not have transport, or time to travel
  3. Better engage patients by empowering them with real-time data to improve their health