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New Technology at Simi Valley Hospital Helps Patients Monitor Health at Home

New Technology at Simi Valley Hospital Helps Patients Monitor Health at Home

Imagine state-of-the-art technology that can prompt patients with chronic illnesses to take their medications, measure their blood pressure and weigh themselves. Now imagine this technology in the comfort and care of their own home.

Adventist Health/Home Care Services of Simi Valley now has such technology available. The Viterion 100 TeleHealth Monitor is a two-way, interactive system composed of a base unit and peripheral equipment, such as a blood pressure cuff, weight scale and blood oxygen monitor.

“This is a revolutionary way to monitor the status of our patients,” said Susan Myers, director of Adventist Health/Home Care Services of Simi Valley. “We now have the capability to quickly respond to significant changes in their health without them having to contact us.”

Home Care Services recently introduced this newly acquired technology to its home health patients with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) and congestive heart failure. The system will soon be rolled out to other patients with chronic conditions.

The TeleHealth Monitor prompts patients to perform routine health checks, then it automatically relays the results to Home Care Services via regular phone lines. Based on the information received, home health nurses can take action, when needed.

Myers offered the hypothetical situation of a congestive heart failure patient who seems to be gaining weight, based on information from the TeleHealth Monitor. The cause could be dangerous fluid retention, so a nurse can be dispatched to the client’s home to verify the weight gain. From there, the client’s physician can be notified to adjust the patient’s care plan, if necessary.

The TeleHealth Monitor also provides important data for scheduled home health and physician office visits. Because the machine stores vital health information, the caregiver can monitor trends in blood pressure, weight and other factors and make appropriate adjustments that enhance the patient’s health. Physicians will be able to access this patient information through a secured website.

“This device will help to eliminate unnecessary hospital visits to the Emergency Room by catching problems before they develop into something more serious,” Myers said, “which literally translates into saving lives in our community.”

Posted 7/9/07