A recent report in Modern Healthcare features a sprawling overview of the various ways that wireless technologies are changing healthcare and wellness. While most of the examples were old hat, a few were new to us:
NYC HHC's Wireless modem with detachable glucose monitor
In 2006, New York City Health and Hospitals Corp., which runs 11 acute-care public hospitals and 90 clinics, introduced a remote monitoring program for patients with diabetes: House Calls, equips 500 participants with "flip-phone-sized modems" that feature detachable glucometers, according to a recent report in Modern Healthcare.
Several times each day the House Calls program participants test their blood and the readings are sent via the modem to a nurse. When the blood tests outside of the target range, the nurse would receive an alert on their BlackBerry and give the patient a call to determine the potential cause of the rogue value. Some 85 percent of participants experienced a significant improvement in their diabetes management. Last year the provider introduced a wireless version of the device so that patients who did not have landlines at home could enter the program.
House Calls costs about $3,600 per patient each year, which is less than the cost of a hospital stay or emergency room visit, according to the Modern Healthcare report. House Calls patients also reported reduced their unplanned doctors' visits, hospitalizations, and ER visits by about 50 percent.
Survey: 54 percent of doctors use mobiles during patient visits
A survey conducted by marketing research firm SDI this past March found that 30 percent of doctors are using hand held mobile devices to access health information, while 54 percent of those doctors said they primarily look up health info on their mobiles during patient visits, according to the Modern Healthcare report.
GNYHA loaning iPads to hospital CEOs, CFOs and others
The Greater New York Hospital Association plans to loan 150 iPads to hospital CEOs, chief financial officers and other executives to determine whether mobile technology can better facilitate operations and communications inside the institutions. The association's membership will make use of proprietary applications for the pilot, according to GNYHA.
For more on these three and a number of other mobile health stories: