HomMed and Strategic Healthcare Programs team up to perform advanced benchmarking in health telemonitoring

Brookfield 16 July 2002HomMed LLC, specialised in the home health telemonitoring industry, has signed an exclusive contract with Strategic Healthcare Programs LLC (SHP), a health care data services company. This alliance will provide HomMed and its partner home health agencies with advanced benchmarking, data mining and data management, processed through SHP technology that will accurately analyse and report performance outcomes for patients using the HomMed Health Monitoring System.

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HomMed's introduction of the HomMed Health Monitoring System is transforming home health agency methods while addressing the nursing shortage and rising health care costs. The monitor has gained wide acceptance and, to date, nearly 100 home health agencies across the country have formed partnerships with HomMed.

The surging popularity of home health telemonitors reached a milestone when HomMed signed its 100th health care agency to provide the HomMed Health Monitoring System to chronically ill patients. The home health telemonitoring industry, currently at the half-billion dollar mark, is expected by some analysts to grow to $10 billion by 2005. In fact, it is predicted that at least 15 percent of all health care services will be provided via telemedicine by 2010, according to Waterford Telemedicine Partners.

With home telemonitoring, patients take their vital signs at home every day and transmit the results to a health professional. Daily monitoring of patients allows the home health agency or hospital to deliver targeted patient visits when they are needed versus the traditional scheduled two visits per week.

Home monitoring is used by patients with a variety of chronic conditions such as hypertension, congestive heart failure, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, HIV, pre-eclampsia, asthma, and chronic renal disease. The HomMed Health Monitoring System lets patients measure such vital signs as heart rate, lung function, blood pressure, blood oxygen saturation, body weight and temperature. The system is individually programmed for patients according to parameters established by their physicians and with its multi-lingual capability, can deliver instructions to patients in their native language.

HomMed has previously announced that the HomMed Health Monitoring System had been granted a United States patent relating to its technology and methods of remotely acquiring patient health data. In addition, the system has received the federal Food and Drug Administration's 510k Class II status, the highest approval rating for non-invasive, hospital-grade devices.

"The interface between SHP's technology and the HomMed monitor will allow us to study approximately 25.000 episodes of data within one year", stated Herschel "Buzz" Peddicord, HomMed founder and CEO. "This is the largest study ever conducted on behalf of telehome monitoring and will help confirm that patients using the HomMed Health Monitoring System have fewer hospitalisations than patients outside of the HomMed network. In fact, we'll be able to track and measure patient outcomes by disease states."

According to Strategic Healthcare Programs (SHP), health care organisations have been relatively slow to embrace information technology as a viable business tool. However, with governmental mandates, accreditation requirements and an increasing need for efficiency, health care organisations are being compelled to implement information technology solutions to meet the increasing demands of the market.

Don Taylor, vice president of business development for SHP, compliments HomMed on its forward positioning of vital health care technology. "SHP is proud to develop and support an automated telehealth outcomes and benchmarking programme for HomMed. We believe that this product will further define the relationship between HomMed and its partner agencies, validating HomMed's ability to provide better home-based patient care, while reducing the cost of that care."

HomMed and SHP will introduce the system to HomMed partner home health agencies at its annual meeting to be held in Las Vegas, August 8-10, 2002. According to Mr. Peddicord, the alliance with SHP is one more way that HomMed supports its partner agencies in positioning them as an agency of choice within a given geographic territory. Mr. Peddicord stated: "Our partner agencies continually demonstrate an ongoing commitment to providing a high level of quality patient care. They are leaders in each of their geographic regions and we are proud to offer them another tool which will help demonstrate that leadership."

HomMed LLC produces and distributes the HomMed Health Monitoring System, which tracks the vital signs of individuals with chronic illnesses on a daily basis from their own homes. The HomMed Health Monitoring System is distributed through the company's growing network of nearly 100 home health care agencies, health systems, and teaching institutions.

Strategic Healthcare Programs LLC (SHP), headquartered in Santa Barbara, California, is a health care data services company specialising in the use of technology and clinical expertise to identify, collect, analyse and report clinical data to over 1000 clients nationwide. SHP was granted the Healthcare Information Technology award sponsored by the National Managed Healthcare Congress for innovations in interfacing an SHP outcomes programme with other health care software vendors. In order to diversify its data mining and data management services to emerging markets, the company recently opened offices in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.


Leslie Versweyveld

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