Westborough-Honeywell Life Care Solutions announced that SALMON VNA & Hospice achieved a 98 percent utilization rate by their patients of its Telehealth equipment during the second quarter of 2015, which places SALMON among the highest 5 percent of Honeywell’s Telehealth customers in the Northeast.
SALMON VNA & Hospice Telehealth Program Manager Kelly Champoux, RN, commented, “This rate reflects SALMON’s commitment to supporting individuals with a high hospitalization risk to remain in their homes by giving them the tools they need to manage their health conditions while staying closely connected to SALMON’s caring staff.”
SALMON owns 80 Honeywell Life Care Solutions Telehealth units, which it provides to patients receiving VNA care who may have a condition requiring daily monitoring, such as CHF (congestive heart failure) or COPD (chronic obstructive pulmonary disease). Placed in patients’ homes, these small, easy-to-use devicescomplete with touchscreen monitors and audio promptsare used to measure patient health indicators including weight, blood pressure, pulse and oxygen level. The equipment is also programmed to capture information unique to each patient’s health condition. The information is then transmitted to a team of nurses at the VNA, who regularly analyze the results and can identify possible health complications, consult with the patients’ physicians, and respond as needed while the patient is still in his or her home.
The Telehealth program has been proven to decrease the number of people who are readmitted to the hospital and emergency room visits, and improve patients’ function and well-being. For example, a recent study indicates CHF patients using Telehealth programs experienced a 73 percent reduction in hospitalizations and ER visits and an 80 percent reduction in the total number of days they spent in the hospital.
Patients and caregivers who utilize the Telehealth equipment report feeling empowered by their active role in managing their own health care, and confident and comforted by the daily monitoring from nurses available through the devices. SALMON VNA & Hospice’s Caren Santos, RN said, “I had a patient tell me, ‘The machine gives me peace of mind. If I get nervous, I can check to see if my heart and breathing are OK. And I know the heart nurses are just a phone call away.’”
“Telehealth educates individuals on the signs and symptoms to look for by asking them questions related to their diagnosis. They learn about what their vital signs actually mean and about what changes to be aware of,” stated SALMON VNA & Hospice’s Alicia Muscatiello, RN. “I’ve noticed it gives them and their families a sense of security, knowing a nurse is watching their progress every day.”
Currently, Telehealth equipment is provided without additional charge to SALMON VNA customers as part of the services they receive under SALMON’s care. Telehealth is also available to individuals through a private pay option. SALMON plans to increase the number of Telehealth units it owns so it can offer this beneficial program to additional patients. For more information about how Telehealth could be helpful to you or someone you know, contact Telehealth Nurse Manager Kelly Champoux at 508- 422-1878 or kchampoux@SalmonHealth.com.