ViTel Net partners with award-winning home care provider Sentara, offering advanced telehealth solutions

Washington DC 13 August 2004Premier Telehealth systems integrator ViTel Net and its home health monitoring solution has been selected by Sentara Home Care Services, an integrated home health care provider, to support their clients' important health care needs and further expand Sentara's groundbreaking, Virginia-based telehealth programme.

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Sentara Home Care Services supports over 5000 home care clients daily, offering an innovative range of services to those who choose to receive medical care in the safe, nurturing confines of their home. Sentara is also the first home care agency in their region to use telehealth to monitor clients who remain at home.

"Through our recent, exhaustive industry search to find the right telehealth technology partner to support our home care services, it became evident that ViTel Net was able to meet our needs today and provide the advanced technology that we need to grow our programmes in the future", stated Rhonda Chetney, MS, RN, director of Clinical Services and Telehealth for Sentara.

Sentara Home Care Services was awarded trade publication HomeCare's number four ranking in 2004 among national, privately-owned home care organisations, and Sentara's progressive telehealth programme was a significant contributor to their recognition.In a recent industry article, Rhonda Chetney stated in part: "... Telehealth is the future of home care. If we're keeping clients out of hospitals, we're keeping them more healthy and improving the quality of their life."

ViTel Net will provide its ViTelCare Turtle home monitoring product and ViTelCare Patient Care Management solution in support of Sentara's "Cardiac Connection" programme to monitor and manage at-home clients suffering from Congestive Heart Failure (CHF), a condition affecting nearly five million Americans, with 550.000 new cases diagnosed each year.

The ViTelCare Turtle is an integrated solution that enables standard disease-management-protocol health monitoring that's easy to set up, easy to use, and encourages at-home patients to take an active role in their own care, leading to an increase in self-confidence and awareness of their health condition. Patients take measurements with integrated medical devices such as a blood pressure cuff and weight scale-important for CHF patients, then complete a personalized health assessment specific to their condition.

Updated health information is transmitted across standard phone lines to a secure server and accessed by Sentara's authorized caregivers. The data is stored in an electronic medical record format managed with ViTelCare Patient Care Management, offering comprehensive remote care management. Using the ViTel Net home health monitoring solution, Sentara is expanding their programme to additional home care clients and continuing to serve as a role model in the industry for medical breakthroughs using technology to enhance home care services and outcomes.

ViTel Net's premier eHealth solutions have been in the news recently, when the President of the United States George W. Bush observed a live Telemedicine demonstration featuring ViTel Net technology, in June at a Department of Commerce-hosted event. "Sentara has a history of effectively utilizing high-tech medicine to deliver world class health care, and we're excited about this new strategic partnership offering their home care clients a valuable telehealth disease management solution from ViTel Net", stated Allen Izadpanah, founder, president, and CEO of ViTel Net.

Sentara Home Care Services is a subsidiary of Sentara Healthcare, a premier not-for-profit health care provider in parts of Virginia and North Carolina, comprised of more than 70 sites of care which include six hospitals, seven nursing centres, three assisted living centres, a physician group, a 300.000 member health plan, and 15.000 dedicated employees. Sentara also offers a full range of health coverage plans, home health and hospice services, physical therapy and rehabilitation services, mobile diagnostic vans, and the region's largest ground and air medical transport services.

Founded in 1989, Visual Telecommunications Networks Inc., better known as ViTel Net, offers telemedicine applications and scalable, remote health monitoring throughout the continuum of care. Based in McLean, Virginia, just minutes from downtown Washington, D.C., ViTel Net can rapidly and seamlessly integrate an enterprise-wide suite of proven solutions into any existing health care infrastructure, taking full advantage of legacy technology investments while introducing new, profitable or cost-saving business-expanding capabilities. More information on ViTel Net can be found in the VMW June 2004 article Computerized Screening and ViTel Net provide self-health maintenance technology with telehealth capabilities


Leslie Versweyveld

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