Proving the Business Case for the Internet of Things

GHP lauds costs savings from telemonitoring program

Iain Morris
October 8, 2014
Health insurance provider Geisinger Health Plan (GHP) has said it was able to save approximately $216 per heart-failure patient per month between 2008 and 2012 through the use of advanced telemonitoring technology.

The telemonitoring program used Bluetooth scales and an Interactive Voice Response solution from telehealth player AMC Health (New York, NY, USA).

GHP (Danville, PA, USA) claims the program led to a significant reduction in hospital readmissions and the cost of care for patients diagnosed with heart failure.

It is also said to have improved the efficiency of care managers, delivering a $3.30 in savings for every $1 invested in the program.

The study showed that the odds of a patient being admitted to the hospital in any given month were 23% lower during the months when they were enrolled in the telemonitoring program.

Moreover, their odds of 30-day and 90-day readmissions were reduce by 44% and 38% respectively.

GHP says that one of the key elements of its program is “member follow-up”, with case managers routinely calling patients to assess weight changes and ask questions about their symptoms.

The AMC technology was able to automate this process, and the provision of near real-time data alerted case managers almost immediately when biometric readings fell outside specific ranges.

The insurance company says this has enabled case managers to better identify pre-acute situations that can be addressed in the least costly and most effective care venues – such as the home of doctor’s office – rather than the hospital.

“Evidence that points to the significant value of remote patient monitoring in enhancing population health management efforts continues to mount,” said Nesim Bildirici, the president and chief executive of AMC Health. “We are thrilled that a second Geisinger study quantifies this benefit for patients diagnosed with heart failure.”

“As the nation’s healthcare system continues its transition to value-based care and shared-risk arrangements gain traction, reducing hospital admissions and lowering the overall cost of care continue to escalate in importance,” added Bildirici.
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