Expansion Builds on Project’s First Phase Success in Helping Reduce Hospital Readmissions of Patients with Heart Disease
Qualcomm Incorporated, through its Qualcomm Wireless Reach initiative; Qualcomm Life, Inc., a subsidiary of Qualcomm Incorporated; and Northern Arizona Healthcare (NAH), the parent organization of Flagstaff Medical Center, recently announced the expansion of the groundbreaking home health monitoring program, Care Beyond Walls and Wires, to include more segments of NAH’s patient population. The expansion also includes the use of individualized remote monitoring kits powered by Qualcomm Life’s 2net Connectivity Platform and HealthyCircles Platform to enable seamless, team-based, care coordination and near real-time patient monitoring whether patients are at home or on the go.
Qualcomm and NAH have been collaborating since 2011 to explore the use of advanced wireless technologies in enhancing the care of patients. This work focused on patients who had been discharged from Flagstaff Medical Center and Verde Valley Medical Center following an admission for congestive heart failure or related cardiac conditions, and were at high risk for readmission.
“We had phenomenal results working with Qualcomm Wireless Reach on the first phase of the Care Beyond Walls and Wires project,” says Gigi Sorenson, RN, MSN Director of Telehealth Services for NAH and Care Beyond Walls and Wires. “Putting smartphones and biometric health-monitoring devices in the hands of patients empowered them to take better control of their health. For project participants, we’ve tracked significantly fewer hospitalizations, shorter hospitalizations and dramatically lower costs.” For the first 50 patients enrolled in the program, compared to the six months prior to enrollment, Flagstaff Medical Center found that patients had fewer hospitalizations (1.82 vs. 3.26 mean per patient) and fewer days hospitalized (5.13 vs. 13.98 mean per patient) in the six months following enrollment. As a result, hospital charges per patient were a mean of $92,317 less in the six months following enrollment.
Building on this success, the project collaborators are now leveraging Qualcomm Life’s 2net Platform and 2net Hub, as well as its HealthyCircles Care Coordination Platform to enable an improved remote monitoring solution that expands and enhances the care of cardiac patients, pulmonary patients and patients needing post-operative care. The far-reaching wireless capabilities of this program will continue to be especially important to patients who live in ultra-rural areas where landline phones may not be available. Some patients also have limited access to electricity and running water and finding transportation to see a physician on a regular basis can be challenging.
The new solution includes:
- Customized remote health monitoring kits – Each kit is tailored to the patients based on their technology needs, health condition, and contains either a 2net Hub or the HealthyCircles Mobile medical-grade application that is powered by 2net Mobile, which is preloaded on a smartphone. The kit also contains connected medical devices specific to a patient’s condition such as cardiac patients, pulmonary patients, and patients needing post-operative care. Biometric data is seamlessly captured and aggregated from the medical devices via the 2net Hub or 2net Mobile.
- Both 2net Hub and 2net Mobile collect and transmit biometric data from each biometric device to the HealthyCircles Platform for patient and health care professional access. The HealthyCircles Platform provides health care professionals a direct channel to deliver disease management guidance, wellness education and other health content straight to the patient’s smartphone. Patients can use the mobile application to message their nurse care manager, set medication reminders, and track and update their medical information - which then updates their personal and clinical care record. They can also use the customized mobile application to remotely participate in care management programs, allowing health care professionals to monitor a patients’ current health state and receive triggered alerts if a patient’s health status is deteriorating.
“We are excited about deepening Qualcomm’s collaboration with NAH to use our advanced, medical-grade, connectivity solutions to power a robust remote monitoring program that will help improve the health of more patients with chronic diseases,” says Rick Valencia, senior vice president and general manager, Qualcomm Life. “Combining 2net connectivity capabilities with HealthyCircles care coordination and exception based management functionality enables a secure and scalable personalized Platform that can ultimately increase patient engagement and adherence while helping health care professionals deliver targeted interventions in an efficient manner.”
Qualcomm Wireless Reach is the primary project funder and provides project management support and wireless technology expertise. To find out more about the work Qualcomm and its program collaborators are doing, please visitwww.qualcomm.com/wirelessreach
About Northern Arizona Healthcare
Northern Arizona Healthcare (NAH) is the largest healthcare organization in Northern and Central Arizona. NAH is dedicated to providing the highest quality, most cost effective healthcare delivery system to the visitors and residents of Northern and Central Arizona. NAH encourages patients to be part of their own treatment through education and wellness programs. For more information, visit www.nahealth.com
About Qualcomm Incorporated
Qualcomm Incorporated is a world leader in 3G, 4G and next-generation wireless technologies. Qualcomm Incorporated includes Qualcomm’s licensing business, QTL, and the vast majority of its patent portfolio. Qualcomm Technologies, Inc., a wholly-owned subsidiary of Qualcomm Incorporated, operates, along with its subsidiaries, substantially all of Qualcomm’s engineering, research and development functions, and substantially all of its products and services businesses, including its semiconductor business, QCT. For more than 25 years, Qualcomm ideas and inventions have driven the evolution of digital communications, linking people everywhere more closely to information, entertainment and each other. For more information, visit www.qualcomm.com.
 Center for Technology Innovation at Brookings white paper: mHealth in China and the United States http://www.insidepolitics.org/brookingsreports/mHealthChinaUS.pdf