By Sanjeev Shetty, Chief Global Strategy and innovation officer
In April 2020, Connected Living forged a partnership with Temi, the world’s first personal assistant robotics platform. Very quickly we innovated and created integration points for Temi to be fully leveraged during the onset of the pandemic, including features such as; screening, hands-free temperature capture, automated building sanitation and virtual engagement with family members. When I started to delve into telehealth, it became abundantly clear that Temi was the perfect combination of a handsfree, autonomous telepresence tool for doctors and - more importantly – it is a platform to conduct remote patient monitoring in a safe and efficient manner using Bluetooth enabled devices. My journey into Remote patient monitoring began when I was working with the state of Maryland to come up with an Aging in Place solution. I realized through that pilot that there were many considerations to account for ; a robust ROI model, HIPAA compliant technology, access to relevant smart phones / tablets, price and ease of use.
“Each year, hospital readmissions among skilled nursing facility patients cost Medicare more than $4 billion, but there is emerging evidence that shows that providing telehealth services to Medicare beneficiaries in long-term care facilities or at home may decrease hospitalizations and readmissions and enable more beneficiaries to remain in the community,” CMS noted in its report.
In order to understand the true value proposition of having a robot administer telehealth and remote patient monitoring, it is important to understand the difference between the two terms.
Telehealth encompasses two-way, real-time communication between patients and healthcare providers, including phone conversations, video, and chats. With recent technological innovation in the telemedicine industry, many healthcare providers are starting to adopt videoconferencing for care management, diagnosis, counseling, and monitoring of patients.
Remote patient monitoring (RPM) is a technology platform that enables healthcare providers to monitor patients’ health outside of physical clinic locations. RPM allows physicians to view continuous patient health data and improve patient outcomes by preemptively managing patient care before episodic care events occur, thus reducing re-admissions.
While telemedicine eliminates the barriers of transportation and distance, telemedicine on its own covers a virtual conversation between a healthcare expert and patient about past health data and described symptoms. Through an RPM platform such as Temi Health, physicians can prescribe health monitoring devices such as a blood pressure monitor, blood glucose meter, digital scale, pulse oximeter, and thermometers. RPM data and population health alerts provide real-time information about when at-risk patient’s results are out of a defined range. This data allows practitioners to rapidly intervene and have an informed patient appointment. Think of telehealth as a one-time two-way communication between doctors and residents, while Remote Patient Monitoring is the ongoing monitoring of patient data, especially those with chronic conditions.
This led Connected Living to invent the Temi Health product and value proposition. We partnered with IntelliH to transform the Temi Robot into a fully integrated Telehealth solution (Temi Health) capable of remote patient monitoring and moving video calls.
The pandemic has caused a 50% rise in need for telehealth and remote patient monitoring technology. The federal agency pointed to research showing that telehealth services provided by physicians during off hours — specifically weeknights and weekend days — could lead to 15 fewer rehospitalizations per year for specific nursing homes, with an average annual savings to Medicare of $151,000 per facility. - Source
The combination of RPM and telehealth reduce readmission rates and are a better way to mitigate the Covid-19 pandemic through efficient use of clinical staff. Temi Health is a cloud-based SaaS solution built with a secure HIPAA compliant architecture. This solution empowers a hospital system to ensure secure access to care teams, patients and caregivers anytime, anywhere and any place as long as they have an Internet connection. Temi Health integrates the diverse ecosystem of inpatient and outpatient rehab centers, skilled nursing facilities, nursing homes, home health agencies, patient-centered medical homes, clinics and acute care hospitals by providing shared patient context.
At Connected Living, we have fully integrated the Temi Health platform and are actively engaged in pilot discussions with two large healthcare providers who are intending to use Temi Health for RPM and to increase efficiency and efficacy of Nurse rounding.
Why is Temi Health unique and how does it address challenges previously posed by telehealth and remote patient monitoring platforms?
Previously, Healthcare systems had to push burdensome carts on wheels or send in tablets for patients and residents to navigate through a telehealth visit. We no longer need those devices with Temi health.
Through connectivity to Bluetooth medical devices, Temi is able to carry and provide diagnostic capabilities for healthcare practitioners.
IntelliH integrates with a wide variety of FDA approved consumer devices. These include FDA approved glucometers, weight scales, blood pressure monitors, SpO2 pulse oximeters, digital stethoscopes and fitness devices such as Fitbit and Apple Watch. Temi Health will soon expand the integrated set of devices to include an Otoscope, a stethoscope and a derma scope.
IntelliH brings on orthogonal video-based interactions- by enabling physicians, language translators, and family caregivers to participate in a Telehealth call.
The autonomous navigation abilities of the Temi Robot allows healthcare professionals to remotely control the robot’s movements during a Telehealth visit.
Moving video calls via the Temi are the next best way to engage in telehealth in a time when in-person visits are more challenging. A doctor sitting miles away can dial into the robot, go into a patient’s room or follow a nurse, and perform a tele-consult visit with real-time access to patient vitals.
How will providers and patients benefit from Temi Health?
Providers will have access to their provider portal online anytime.
Temi Health sends automatic population health alerts to providers when their patient data is out of the normal range. They can check their patient data history and provide timely care to avoid costly ER visits.
Patients use RPM devices at home or on the go to share health information like blood pressure, weight, and temperature with their healthcare provider.
With an RPM platform such as Temi Health, healthcare providers can reduce episodic care, readmission rates and improve patient care by continuously monitoring high-risk seniors in the population.
Patients are assured continuous proactive monitoring , reducing the likelihood for episodic care and rush trips to the ER due to sudden surges in vitals or changes in their chronic conditions.
Chronic disease care comprises two thirds of the US healthcare spend, or over $2 Trillion annually - Source
How will Senior Living and Providers Pay for Temi Health?
CMS has taken bold steps to incentivize providers by enabling reimbursement for Remote Patient Monitoring as well as Chronic Care Management, with specific programs slated for 2021 to provide better reimbursements to AL and SNF’s.
Payment reform and outcome centric models- MIPS/MACRA, Value Based Purchasing, Primary Care First and Accountable Care ,along with new reimbursement Codes, are leading providers to consider Remote Patient Monitoring and Telehealth as a strategic construct of care delivery.
How does Temi Health work?
Temi Health, powered by IntelliH, provides a Workflow enabled Care Coordination platform for Care Coordinators and Care teams across the care continuum. Patient 360 provides a consistent view of a patient’s condition to all participating care teams.
Care teams interact through their dashboards on personal computers or Tablets after a prescription is issued by a primary care physician (PCP).
Patients are provided with a Patient app on iOS or Android Smartphones or Tablets. The App’s user friendly- interactions include point and click as well as speaking instead of typing.
Temi Health provides immersive access & remote patient monitoring through wireless enabled disease relevant devices (Blood pressure, Glucometer, SpO2, Weight scale, Thermometer) to patients in all settings outside of the hospital.
The system of Intelligence supports proactive care, monitoring and management of Diabetic, CHF and Post-Operative patients.
Monitoring patient context and stratifying patient by risk providing real time visibility into patient insights enables care teams to identify and treat patients who need immediate care.
Temi Health notifies care coordinators through smart alerts if an intervention is required.
The iOS/Android based patient APP dynamically configures for co-morbidity enabling new monitoring devices without any new app download.
Temi Health integrates with a variety of EMR’s (Epic, Cerner, Kinser, Allscripts, etc.) bringing a unified patient context to diverse care teams.
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