Patients who receive telemonitoring services and blood pressure management support from a pharmacist are more likely to lower their blood pressure than those who do not receive the extra support, according to a study presented at the American Heart Association's Quality of Care Outcomes Research Scientific Sessions 2012, Healthcare IT News reports.
For the study, researchers split 450 patients with high blood pressure into two groups. Both groups of patients received traditional care though a primary care provider, but the intervention group also received telemonitoring and blood pressure management support from a pharmacist.
Patients in the intervention group measured their blood pressure at home and sent the readings to pharmacists through a secure website. The pharmacists then assessed the information and consulted with patients once or twice a month by phone.
After six months, the study found that 71.8% of patients in the group that received telemonitoring support had lowered their blood pressure to healthy levels, compared with 45.2% of patients in the control group.
Compared with the control group, the study found the telemonitoring group:
- Saw larger declines in their blood pressure levels;
- Received more high blood pressure medications; and
- Reported better medication adherence.
Karen Margolis -- the study's lead author and director of clinical research at HealthPartners Research Foundation -- said, "If these early results can be sustained over the long run, it might decrease the number of patients who suffer heart attacks, strokes or other complication of high blood pressure" (Monegain, Healthcare IT News, 5/10).