For chronic conditions such as congestive heart failure (CHF), remote patient monitoring (RPM) is crucial to ensuring the health and safety of patients between regularly scheduled visits. CHF is a condition in which the heart does not adequately pump blood through the body. This can result in heart failure, a life threatening emergency which can occur at any time between sporadic visits to doctors offices.
What is remote monitoring for congestive heart failure?
Monitoring CHF remotely enables doctors to track patients regardless of their location, ensure that their biometrics are within a safe range, and even predict and prevent future heart failure. RPM approaches that rely on non-invasive remote devices are incredibly useful for large patient populations and pose lower risk and cost relative to invasive remote care and devices.
For CHF patients, wearing an emergency watch allows them to track their heart rate and activity levels, biometrics that can indicate signs of heart failure to practitioners. Lack of physical activity and irregular heart rates are strong risk factors for CHF and are helpful in identifying patients who are at risk of CHF or at risk of heart failure. This monitoring is also helpful in determining the proper treatment and management plans for both previously and more recently diagnosed CHF patients.
How can remote patient monitoring help congestive heart failure?
RPM is a life saving program for Medicare patients suffering from chronic conditions like CHF. Continuous monitoring also allows the physician to patient relationship to be strengthened so that trust can be established and behavioral predictions can be made on behalf of the practitioner. The CHF patients that benefit most from RPM tend to be at higher risk and more recently hospitalized due to heart failure, though all CHF patients may benefit from remote monitoring. Monitoring heart rate and activity levels enable clinicians to study daily behavioral patterns to develop more effective treatment and management plans. As patients are able to record and collect more data for practitioners to review, they can begin to receive more personalized, predictive, and collaborative care.
What happens if a CHF patient experiences a heart failure emergency?
If a remote CHF patient were to experience heart failure or a heart related emergency, medical staff will be notified immediately without patient intervention. In the event that a patient’s measurements, recorded by remote devices, stray from the patient’s safe range, the RPM system would send an urgent alert to the appropriate staff member. This process, population health management (PHM), is used to identify patients that fall out of their respective safe ranges so that practices are able to prioritize and attend to their most at-risk patients.
Dedicated medical staff members are immediately notified of these at-risk patients and can work to prevent the patient’s condition from worsening or escalating. PHM alerts are often categorized as low, medium, and high. These notifications also allow clinicians to remain within the requirements of the RPM Medicare program so that they may continue to be reimbursed for their remote services. RPM helps practitioners collect extremely useful patient data and ensure the proper diagnosis, management, prevention, and treatment of CHF for their patients.
Remote monitoring can help your patients with CHF by providing continuous protection and prevention of future heart failure.