Moving America Forward

These New York Seniors Are on the Cutting Edge of Telemedicine

February 24, 2014
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These New York Seniors Are on the Cutting Edge of Telemedicine
Pace University and Vital Care Services have partnered to use telehealth monitoring for older adults via Vimeo
A pilot program is delivering 21st-century tech to 20th-century facilities.

What happens when you take 21st century technology and adapt it to a 20th century environment? A New York City pilot program is finding out, by bringing telehealth to four senior centers around the city. Pace University and VitalCare Services partnered with the city to try telehealth with about 100 residents over the course of six months, and the response from residents and staff has been amazing. VitalCare technicians used mobile technology to modernize methods of measuring blood oxygen, blood pressure, and weight at the senior centers. Everything syncs wirelessly, improving access and records at the same time. Residents have embraced it as a weekly way to stay aware of their health status and keep in touch with their physician teams, and saving the trip from 191st Street to the Village adds convenience, helps adherence and continuity, and cuts costs. Health professionals point to benefits like the ability to log in remotely and check all of the available information, and the shared space makes it easier for teams of physicians to communicate office-to-office. And the technicians love the speed and efficiency as well as the opportunities to connect with so many patients. The pilot is proving instrumental in helping residents maintain healthy, positive lives, and it’s breaking down barriers, from budgets to languages, and building confidence for a better-connected health service system.

 

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