The Role of Remote Patient Monitoring in Preventative Healthcare

Preventative medicine and healthcare represent a new dawn of better care, and it’s no longer just an option but a necessity. While the goal of preventative healthcare has been elusive for decades, although we have succeeded somewhat with immunizations and preventative screenings, that all began to change with the evolution of technology. Remote patient monitoring (RPM), in particular, is settling in as the beating heart of preventative healthcare. It is the final missing piece that is uniting workflows and ensuring a care formula that anticipates rather than reacts. In this article, we’ll explore just how RPM is providing value as the cornerstone of preventative healthcare interventions.

Getting Ahead Of Cardiovascular Problems With At-Home ECGs

Cardiovascular issues are the leading cause of death on the planet. By the time symptoms of heart disease surface, the majority of cases are usually beyond surgical and general medical intervention. At this point, providers can do little else but try to manage the disease and its symptoms as there’s no possible way to cure it.

Remote patient monitoring plays a huge role in ensuring it doesn’t get to that stage, thanks to remote cardiac monitoring devices such as:

  • Holter monitors
  • Telemetry monitors
  • Implantable Cardiovert Defibrillator (ICD)
  •  Implantable Loop Recorders (ILR)
  • Pacemakers and so on

All in all, these devices allow remote and real-time electrocardiographic monitoring. Essentially working like an always-on, at-home ECG device, this technology enables physicians to provide preventative healthcare based on the electronic data they receive from these devices in real time.

Based on changes in heart rhythm, rate, and other biomarkers, they can pick up arrhythmias and other heart defects before they become troublesome or cause irreversible damage to heart valves, chambers, and tissue.

Supporting Clinical Workers To Enable Preventative Care

One of the most significant barriers to healthcare is the dearth of healthcare workers. In America alone, 22% of hospitals are short on staff, while the figure rises tremendously in other parts of the globe. Distance is also another massive obstacle to preventative care.

Remote patient monitoring supports clinicians by taking over and reducing the number of administrative duties in their workflow. This freeing of personnel allows care providers to channel more human resources toward early disease detection rather than only focusing on addressing afflicted patients in the medical establishment.

Besides augmenting the clinical workforce, remote patient monitoring also breaks down distance obstacles. Accessibility is a huge hindrance with traditional preventative measures such as regular screening, where tests have to occur in person. RPM technologies allow for remote testing, thus removing accessibility challenges and paving the way for effortless preventive care.

Smarter Approach To Prevention With AI-Driven RPM

Machine learning models learn from historical data. They use vast training data sets, gaining the ability to spot patterns and trends that would be neigh impossible for physicians to uncover without comparing them against patient symptoms.

What this means essentially is that AI-driven technology can spot subtle health indicators that would predispose an individual to a disease. And this occurs possibly years before the patient experiences a single symptom.

The technology can pick out apparent risk factors, allowing physicians to not just screen everyone generally but focus just on those at high risk of developing a chronic condition, resulting in the following benefits:

  • Higher financial yield
  • Higher clinical yield
  • Greater quality of life

With traditional preventative screening, reports indicate that just 24% of such cases are “high value.” Artificial intelligence in remote patient monitoring can improve that percentage by enabling more targeted early disease detection.

Patient Education Through Mobile RPM

In as much as clinicians often get the bulk of the focus when it comes to healthcare, patients have a lot of responsibilities too, especially as far as preventative medicine goes.

The patient’s lifestyle determines their health. It’s up to them to seek the knowledge and assistance that they require for disease prevention in terms of:

  • Medication and supplements
  • Nutrition and diet
  •  Lifestyle adjustments
  •  Safety and so on

Traditionally, nurses have been the enablers of patient participation and education in the care process. But they can’t be with the patient round-the-clock. Coupled with nursing shortages- reports indicate a deficit of 13,000,000 nurses worldwide- it becomes clear just how RPM is pivotal. Through mobile RPM (through mobile apps and virtual calls), providers can more easily increase awareness and facilitate patient health literacy. 

Incentivizing Preventative Care Via RPM Gamification

Let’s face it, preventative care be a boring affair for patients, who rarely find the process fun or stimulating. Thus, their interest in preventative care can dwindle over time. The answer to preventing that could be through the gamification of remote patient monitoring.

The addition of game-like elements into RPM can incentivize patients, consequently improving adherence to preventative healthcare programs. A few ways we could tap into the gamification of RPM include:

  • Leaderboards to improve healthy competition and engagement
  • Avatars to encourage an active patient community, where patients can share ideas and get assistance
  • Virtual challenges that increase motivation for participation, and so

Besides just getting patients more involved, there’s a benefit for clinicians as well. Physicians get to understand patients better, particularly in terms of patterns and behaviors, thus allowing for even more customization of wellness plans.

RPM Helps Pick Out Social Determinants Of Health

Simply known as SDH or SDoH, the World Health Organization classifies social determinants of health as non-medical aspects that significantly impact health outcomes.

Some examples of SDHs include:

  • Place of birth/living
  • Place of work
  • Religion
  • Age and so on

These play huge roles in preventative care beyond some of the medical factors we’ve discussed, and remote patient monitoring programs could play a huge role here once more.

RPM can address various social health determinants through virtual care that helps physicians to understand better without necessarily needing in-person interactions. It enables care providers to understand and address key challenges that individuals may be facing in their lives.

Prevention is Better Than Cure!

Instead of addressing the problem when diseases knock at your patient’s door, it’s better to meet the issue head-on with preventive medicine. It is the key to empowering a healthier population and bringing down healthcare expenditure for both providers and patients. Be smart and prevent with remote patient monitoring technology, the roadmap to a lifetime of good health. Aura Health Solutions is here for you with RPM solutions that will provide a robust foundation for good health. Contact us today to set up your RPM-driven preventative healthcare program!