Tele and Mobile Health
While there have been tremendous advances in mobile devices that monitor vital signs, the real challenge is how to best deploy these so that clinicians and doctors can deliver improved more efficient services to patients and so that the wellbeing and quality of life of patients can not only be improved but actually be life changing.
“I see a nurse once instead of three times a week, and the doctor once every six months instead of every three weeks. I control my condition now instead of it controlling me” – the kind of outcome that is being achieved today when tele and mobile health solutions are deployed correctly.
The number of people with long-term health conditions continues to increase, driving up the cost of providing healthcare. The scale of the problem can be understood by looking at some the facts below. The need to find ways of reducing costs and yet provide appropriate care for more people has never been greater.
Effective, well designed mobile and tele health solutions provide a way of reducing the costs of healthcare, reducing the time that doctors and clinicians need to spend with certain types of patients (hence allowing them to see more patients) and allowing some groups of people to better understand and manage their own conditions.
- Nearly 26 million adults and children in the United States (8.3 percent of the population) have diabetes. This is predicted to rise to 39 million by 2020.
- Nearly 79 million people in the United States have pre-diabetes. This is predicted to rise to 96 million by 2020.
- The estimated spend in the United States on diabetes over the next decade is $3.4 Trillion.
- More than 15.4 million people in England have long-term health problems such as Diabetes, Coronary heart Disease and Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease). This is expected to rise to 18 million by 2025.
- Long-term conditions account for 70% of the total health and social care spend in England.
- 3.2 million people have Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Diseaase. It costs the NHS £800 million each year.
- Every 10 minutes three people are diagnosed with diabetes in the UK.
The above situations can all be improved to some extent by the appropriate application of tele and mobile heath solutions. If you only saved 1% of the predicted cost of treating Diabetes in the US over the next 10 years by deploying tele and mobile health solutions, you would be saving over $30 billon!
Tele and mobile health is a relatively new area and there is still much to learn about how to deliver what clinicians and doctors will adopt as valuable assets that support the invaluable work that they do.
StreamCentral delivers a unique and new prospect for clinicians, doctors and medical triage teams. It allows them, and not technologists, to specify what they want to see, when they want to see it and how, making the information that is delivered to them totally tied to how they want technology to support their work and the lives of their patients.
StreamCentral does the basis of gathering data from multiple devices, presenting the discrete information that these provide (e.g. blood pressure, heart rate, glucose levels, etc) and if required will generate alerts when any threshold associated with any patient is reached.
There are many different mobile and tele health devices on the market today that can transmit information about an individual’s health, and these include:
- Blood pressure meter
- Pulse rate meter
- Weight scales
- Coagulation meter
- Ketone meter
In addition to the basics, StreamCentral can correlate different vital signs from different sensors for a given patient and provide an holistic view of the condition of an individual, and generate more specific alerts, tailored to the individual, that result from a combination of vital sign readings. StreamCentral puts the doctor/clinician in control of deciding what readings/thresholds or combination of readings/thresholds they are interested in being alerted on for any individual or group of individuals.
StreamCentral can also overlay environmental context to a set of readings at any point in time:
- Ambient room temperature around the patient
- Atmospheric temperature at the location of the patient
- Atmospheric pressure
- Air pollution levels from local weather data
- Pollen level
With StreamCentral’s advanced data analytics and data visualisation capabilities, doctors, clinicians and others providing healthcare services can see in near real time if there are any patterns emerging across the monitored population that may suggest the spread of a virus or some other general health threatening activity.