Brief Highlights Ways To Promote the Successful Adoption of Telehealth

TOPIC ALERT:

The Commonwealth Fund has released a brief outlining strategies that can contribute to the successful adoption of telehealth technology, FierceHealthIT reports.

Details of the Brief

For the brief, researchers from the Public Health Institute's Center for Innovation and Technology in Public Health analyzed case studies of:

  • Centura Health at Home in Denver;
  • Partners HealthCare in Boston; and
  • The Veterans Health Administration.

According to the brief's authors -- Andrew Broderick and David Lindeman, co-directors at the center -- all three of the analyzed organizations implemented telehealth programs successfully. The authors noted that successful telehealth programs can help organizations reduce costs and improve clinical outcomes.

Keys for Successful Telehealth Implementation

The brief stated that the successful adoption of telehealth technology requires:

  • Breaking down barriers to patient participation, including the cost of receiving telehealth care;
  • Concerted effort from numerous stakeholders; and
  • Sufficient time to integrate telehealth systems.

Examples From Case Studies

The brief noted that the analyzed organizations implemented telehealth programs successfully in various ways (Bowman, FierceHealthIT, 1/31). For example:

  • Centura Health at Home integrated a clinical call center with its remote patient monitoring program to expand the reach of its telehealth-enabled home health care services (Commonwealth Fund brief, January 2013);
  • Partners used telehealth tools to teach patients health management skills, leading to a 50% reduction in heart failure-related readmission rates among participating patients and a 44% reduction in non-heart failure-related readmissions; and
  • VHA waived copayments for patients receiving telehealth care (FierceHealthIT, 1/31).

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