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Improving Patient Care and Outcomes

Remote Patient Monitoring Project Will Enhance Chronic Disease Management

February 13, 2015 (St. John's) – A pilot project to remotely monitor patients with select chronic diseases will help these individuals better manage their health and reduce the need for medical interventions. The project is being led by Eastern Health and will involve up to 700 patients over the course of a year.

"The Remote Patient Monitoring initiative is a new approach to helping individuals manage their chronic disease that can have long-term positive impacts on patient outcomes, satisfaction and quality of life. Part of living with any disease is learning how to manage and care for yourself so that you can reduce the need for medical interventions. This is an innovative approach that we hope can also improve wait times for emergency departments and medical appointments and over the long-term address health care sustainability and the appropriate use of resources. I look forward to seeing this initiative get underway and the positive results it will have for patients and health services."

- The Honourable Steve Kent, Deputy Premier and Minister of Health and Community Services

The Remote Patient Monitoring project will provide patients with tablets, pulse oximeters, blood pressure cuffs and weigh scales that will be remotely monitored by a nursing team. The project, expected to begin this summer, will initially involve the monitoring of up to 700 individuals with Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease and Congestive Heart Failure over the course of a year. At the end of one year the project will be evaluated and its ongoing continuation will be determined based on the results.

"At Eastern Health, we aim to improve access to health care by providing the right intervention for the right client at the right time and in the right place. In this case, the 'right place' may be in a client's own home as the Remote Patient Monitoring project will allow individuals living throughout Newfoundland and Labrador to be observed remotely via innovative technology. By monitoring these clients we hope to identify changes in health status earlier to prevent complications that cause patients to have to seek medical attention."

- David Diamond, President and CEO, Eastern Health

Nurses will staff monitoring stations Monday to Friday from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. and will monitor biometric information and symptoms such as fatigue and shortness of breath. They will then be able to provide feedback to the patient to help improve behavior so that the patient learns how best to manage their symptoms. The project will allow for the patients to be assessed remotely rather than having to frequent health centres or emergency departments for a regular check-up.

The Provincial Government will provide approximately $1 million for the one year project which covers eligible costs and nursing salaries. In addition, Canada Health Infoway will provide approximately $1.65 million to support project implementation.

"Innovative digital health solutions are helping transform health care in Canada. Remote Patient Monitoring is an excellent example of innovation at work. We are excited about the potential of Remote Patient Monitoring and look forward to working with Eastern Health on this project."

- Michael Green, President and CEO, Canada Health Infoway

QUICK FACTS

  • A new Remote Patient Monitoring project is being implemented to help individuals with chronic diseases better manage their health outcomes with the overall goal of having long-term positive impacts on patient outcomes, satisfaction and quality of life.
  • The project is being led by Eastern Health and will involve up to 700 people over the course of a year.
  • The project will provide patients with tablets, pulse oximeters, blood pressure cuffs and weigh scales and nurses will remotely monitor them Monday to Friday from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.
  • The project will allow for the patients to be assessed remotely rather than having to frequent health centres or emergency departments for a regular check-up.
  • The Provincial Government will provide approximately $1 million for the one-year pilot project and Canada Health Infoway will provide approximately $1.65 million to support project implementation.

About Canada Health Infoway

Infoway helps to improve the health of Canadians by working with partners to accelerate the development, adoption and effective use of digital health across Canada. Through our investments, we help deliver better quality and access to care and more efficient delivery of health services for patients and clinicians. Infoway is an independent, not-for-profit organization funded by the federal government.

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For more information:

Hugh Donnan
Director of Communications
Department of Health and Community Services
Tel: (709)-729-1377, 725-6511
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Angela Greenslade
Media Relations Manager (Acting)
Eastern Health
Tel: (709) 777-1426
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Karen Schmidt
Director, Corporate Communications
Canada Health Infoway
Tel: (416) 595-3167
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