Heart failure (HF) affects about 6.2 million adults in the United States. It is the most common cause of hospitalization among those over 65 years of age1,2. Unfortunately, the status-quo of patient education and disease self-management is not enough to keep many HF patients from experiencing rehospitalization within days or months of their initial admission.
Statistics show that 25% of patients discharged after an HF hospital admission can expect rehospitalization for the same issue within 30 days. This percentage jumps to 50% when the post-hospitalization timeline is lengthened to six months3.
While these numbers point to readmission as a near inevitability, take heart. Studies have also posited that a quarter of HF readmissions may be preventable4. Urging patient compliance with discharge instructions is one way clinicians can reduce the likelihood of rehospitalization.
However, research indicates additional tools are necessary to ensure HF patients follow their doctor’s orders. Advanced technology, in the form of remote patient monitoring, may serve as an invaluable means to boost patient compliance, detect opportunities for early intervention, and lower readmission rates5.
The ACA’s Hospital Readmissions Reduction Program (HRRP), which penalizes hospitals with high rates of readmission for HF as well as other conditions, has sparked a renewed effort in the improvement and expansion of patient education techniques6. These methods aim to make patient education more interactive and accessible to patients7.
Upon discharge, HF patients are educated by their care team on what they can do at home to prevent rehospitalization. This education typically involves a lifestyle component, such as making dietary changes, increasing physical activity, and adding a prescription medication regimen.
These changes to a patient’s routine may prove difficult for them to adhere to. Challenges to compliance can be attributed, for example, to co-morbidities, the ability of the patient to afford or otherwise access chronic medication, and timely follow-up care.
The high rate of medication noncompliance is a well-known and widespread problem among HF patients. Noncompliance to chronic medications can reach levels as high as 50%8. Failure to adhere to a medication regimen can lead to a worsening of HF symptoms, increased emergency room visits, hospital admissions, and even death.
The steep costs of noncompliance are not limited to poor patient outcomes. According to the CDC, HF is also an economic issue with costs including clinical care, prescription medication, and work absenteeism adding up to a whopping $30.7 billion in 20129. Projections indicate that by 2030 the number will rise to $70 billion a year in the US10.
As clinicians work to reduce readmissions of HF patients by way of increased compliance, they have also turned an eye to improving the early detection of worsening HF symptoms before they lead to readmission. Remote monitoring for HF patients may help them achieve both goals.
Remote monitoring for HF has emerged as an effective, patient-friendly way to increase compliance with medication and lifestyle changes. It allows patients to see and react to changes in their behavior. These systems enable the safe recording and secure communication of a patient’s symptoms to HF specialists, permitting them to intervene before deterioration of their condition requires hospitalization.
Utilizing a robust virtual care platform to facilitate personalized interactions and remote monitoring, the Cardiac RMS care managers empower patients to feel connected to their caregivers and stay compliant between office visits. What makes Cardiac RMS different is the way we service a clinic and the extraordinary care we give the patients thus improving patient outcomes.
While HF remains a severe and difficult to manage condition, incorporating remote monitoring into a patient’s care plan can give HF patients and clinicians confidence that unnecessary rehospitalizations can be reduced and avoided.
For more information on remote monitoring options powered by cardiac care experts, not AI, visit https://cardiacrms.com/
Cardiac RMS LLC is a Medicare-approved Independent Diagnostic and Testing Facility (IDTF) that will enable you to better manage and follow your remote monitoring patients who have a cardiac pacemaker, implantable cardiac defibrillator, implantable heart failure device or implantable loop recorder.