Local Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease and Congestive Heart Failure Patients Can Achieve Self-Management Through Virtual Care

NEWS
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
May 13, 2019

London, ON – Local area patients with Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease and Congestive Heart Failure can self-refer to receive help managing their conditions at home.

A free service funded by the Ontario Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care, and delivered in partnership with Ontario Telemedicine Network (www.OTN.ca), Telehomecare is a four to six month program that helps patients achieve self-management independence for mild to moderate Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD) and Congestive Heart Failure (CHF).

The results achieved to date within the program for mild to moderate Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary disease and Congestive Heart failure speak volumes: in the South West Local Health Integration Network (LHIN) we have seen that compared to the 90 days prior to joining the program, the number of patients who had unplanned hospital admits during the program decreased nearly 68 per cent. The LHIN is hoping to increase referrals from primary care and the general public to the Telehomecare program, in an effort to reach more patients in the early stages of the ailments.

In addition, also compared to the 90 days prior to joining the program, the number of Telehomecare patients who had unplanned hospital admits 90 days after they completed the self-management program decreased just over eighty percent.

The South West LHIN’s outreach program has helped produce a 49 per cent jump in monitored patients since the start of 2019, from 142 patients to 212.

Telehomecare allows patients to manage their health with a computer tablet and health monitoring equipment (see photo attached of blood pressure monitor, pulse oximeter, weight scale and computer tablet) and through customized health coaching.

All communications take place via a computer or by phone. The equipment enables Telehomecare nurses and staff to see the patient’s vitals in near real-time. This ability to intervene in near real-time provides an opportunity to educate patients so they can better identify and understand their symptoms, enables early intervention and the potential to avoid an exacerbation.

“Telehomecare is important to patients with COPD and CHF and the providers supporting them,” said Renato Discenza, Chief Executive Officer of the South West LHIN. “It provides faster access, self-management tools for the patient and family, and most importantly, better health outcomes. Telehomecare is representative of the type of resources that are vital to creating a sustainable, digitally-enabled health care system.”

To learn more about Telehomecare for Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease and Congestive Heart Failure, please call the South West LHIN Telehomecare Team at 1-855-200-3397.

-30-

Photo of Telehomecare items
Attachment: Photo of patient equipment (blood pressure monitor, pulse oximeter, weight scale, computer tablet).


For more information:

Dan Brennan
Director, Communications
South West LHIN
dan.brennan@lhins.on.ca
519-640-2604