Funding for the project comes from the Veteran's Millennium Health Care Act, which requires the Veterans Administration (VA) to increase both home- and community-based long-term care for the United States' largest integrated health care system. The Act provides, for the first time, non-institutional long-term care as part of the basic benefits package for VA enrollees.
The Dayton Veterans Administration Medical Center (VAMC) plans to use Health Hero's technology platform to improve the quality of care offered to veterans with chronic health conditions while reducing hospitalisations, emergency room visits, and overall health care costs. Elder Care Co-ordinators at the Dayton site will use the Health Hero system to provide just-in-time feedback to patient care providers, allowing early detection of and intervention for adverse events.
The Health Hero platform consists of the Health Buddy, an easy-to-use patient communication appliance connected to the patient's phone line, which sends information to the iCare Desktop, a Web-based patient management tool that monitors clients' responses. Clients respond to daily questions customised for specific health conditions including senior wellness, diabetes, and heart failure.
The Dayton VA Medical Center provides a continuum of care which encompasses all levels of acute, nursing home, and domiciliary care. The site's programmes are designed to assure an atmosphere of friendly, personal and individualised patient care, and state-of-the-art technology is used to treat the total patient and assure the veteran continuity of care. The Dayton VAMC will utilise Health Hero's platform to improve the quality and frequency of communication between veterans and their care providers.
"We are excited to use Health Hero's platform to provide exceptional care to our frail elderly veteran population. The education that the Health Buddy offers, along with the daily structured communication, enables us to help veterans remain safe and comfortable in their own homes", stated Dawn Fortunato, MGS Pilot Project Manager, Model 1.
"Health Hero is pleased to welcome VISN 10 into the outstanding group of VA clients utilising our technology to provide efficient and effective care for chronically ill patients", stated Julie Cheitlin Cherry, Health Hero Network Medical Director. Health Hero Network Inc., founded in 1988, develops and licenses 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 products includes Health Buddy, Health Buddy Web, other licensee devices for data collection and communications with patients, and iCare Desktop, an Internet-based care management and research tool 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 on the company is available in the VMW January 2003 article Health Hero renews patient monitoring contract with Veterans Integrated Service Network 8 for three years.