American Medical Alert Corporation and Health Hero Network launch PERS Buddy for interactive patient monitoring

Oceanside 24 October 2002American Medical Alert Corporation (AMAC), a provider of Personal Emergency Response Systems (PERS) and 24 hour monitoring services, and Health Hero Network Inc., the developer of award-winning technology solutions for health monitoring, have released PERS Buddy. This new, interactive monitoring system combines AMAC's personal emergency response technology with Health Hero Network's Health Buddy appliance, utilising the Health Hero technology platform to ensure secure data management and health care provider access to patient data across an Internet connection.

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PERS Buddy is the first product to combine access to emergency care with ongoing health monitoring for over a dozen medical conditions to increase a health care provider's ability to monitor patients at home, which is expected to result in improved patient security as well as prolonging a patient's ability to remain independent.

Unveiled at the Disease Management Association of America (DMAA) Conference, October 23 in San Antonio, Texas, PERS Buddy marks an important milestone in the strategic alliance between Health Hero Network and AMAC in the creation of a comprehensive solution for patients by covering all aspects of care from emergency response to disease management monitoring.

PERS Buddy gives patients immediate access to a 24/7 monitoring centre for emergency care, 2-way voice communication and daily interactive contact via scripted communication. With Internet data reporting capabilities, providers have a new ability to monitor symptoms, identify problems, and take appropriate action to intervene in a cost-effective, timely manner.

"With PERS Buddy, we believe AMAC delivers a fully integrated 24/7 telehealth platform to health care providers that can enable cost effective care for disease state monitoring to improve health outcomes and increase patient safety. Patients using PERS Buddy will enjoy the experience of enhanced communication with their provider and greater independence and quality of life", stated Fred Siegel, Vice President of Marketing, AMAC at a DMAA press conference in San Antonio, Texas.

"The new category of health care technology created by AMAC's PERS Buddy expands the Health Buddy product line by continuing our tradition of delivering innovative technology to help both patients and providers, giving each group easy access to the information and services they require", stated Steve Brown, CEO and President of Health Hero Network.

By combining the Health Buddy appliance patient interface and AMAC's experience in emergency response monitoring, PERS Buddy enables patients to receive and respond to daily questions and education from their health care providers at home and provides patients with immediate access to assistance in an emergency.

The system utilises the Health Hero Network technology platform, which supplies secure data transfer and management and is the basis for provider interaction with patient data. Health care providers will access patient information through the AMAC iCare Desktop, a broadbased communications tool used by medical professionals to manage large populations of chronically ill patients while maintaining high quality of care. PERS Buddy will be commercially available January 1, 2003 from both Health Hero Network and AMAC.

AMAC is specialised in remote health monitoring devices and 24/7 communication services designed to promote early medical intervention and improve quality of life for senior, disabled, and chronically ill populations. AMAC's product and service offerings include Personal Emergency Response Systems (PERS), electronic medication reminder devices, disease management monitoring appliances, and 24/7 medical on-call and emergency response monitoring. AMAC operates several National Medical On-Call and Communication Centers allowing access to trained response professionals 24/7.

Health Hero Network Inc., founded in 1988 and headquartered in Mountain View, California, develops and licenses industry-leading technology solutions for health monitoring and management. The Health Hero technology platform offers Internet-enabled care management tools, multiple patient interfaces, and a secure environment for data communications.

The company's product line includes Health Buddy, Health Buddy Web and other licensee devices for data collection and communications with patients, and iCare Desktop, an Internet-based care management and research solution for health care professionals. Health Hero offers over a dozen standard health management programmes delivering daily monitoring and education, and promoting positive behavioural change for better chronic care with lower costs to the health care system. Health Hero Network technology is protected by over 50 issued United States patents.

More news about Health Hero Network is available in the VMW November 2001 article Mercy uses Health Hero's Health Buddy for telemedical support to underserved patients.


Leslie Versweyveld

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