Adaptation of telemedicine in chronic management protocols
The increasing growth of telemedicine is driven by the mixed medical needs of patients, those requiring chronic care at home and those requiring care during a hospital stay. As a result, the chronic-care management components are shaped distinctly. These are built to cater to the public need for treatment and increased self-management at home.
The chronic-care management goal is to improve the overall health status and life expectancy rather than cure the underlying disease. Thus, the design of this care model shall assume that a cure may never be achieved. This would then shift the focus on how much can be done to optimize the quality of life as long as possible. However, this approach also has pushed the providers to adopt innovations precisely because traditional or existing technologies have not been able to address these issues effectively or efficiently. The same could be said about clinical procedures and systems because they might be proven useful but could prove costly. In such a situation, a particular technology would have little value if it doesn’t match its context and target users’ goals and preferences.
Use of Tele-ICU!
Telemedicine is the use of telecommunications and IT solutions to deliver healthcare services remotely. It can be delivered synchronously (e.g., video-conferencing) or asynchronously (e.g., e-mail and text messaging). In the current scenario, many health systems have implemented telehealth technologies to reduce patient visits to the hospitals, decrease the spread of infections and preserve personal protective equipments.
Telemedicine has been shown to improve the quality of life in patients with chronic diseases. It may be particularly helpful in the care of patients with chronic diseases ex-Cancer or any end stage medical disease, as these patients are at high risk for complications. While evidence for specific types of interventions is limited, there is strong evidence that telemedicine improves access to care for patients with chronic diseases.
What is Tele ICU?
Tele-ICU is a system of remote monitoring and management of ICU patients. It is currently the only form of telemedicine that has been shown to improve patient outcomes and has been in use for over 25 years. Tele-ICU involves real-time communication between a centralized hub and patient care teams, using audio-visual equipment to monitor patients, as well as clinical data received from devices. It provide early warning signs and alerts to the clinicians. When an alert goes off, the physician or nurse practitioner can immediately communicate with the bedside nurse, who can then notify the attending physician. The system also allows for ongoing consultations between physicians who are not in the same location.
Telemedicine can also be used to monitor chronic conditions in non-acute care settings. For example, home monitoring for diabetic patients, hypertensive patients, COPD patients etc. It can be used to help these patients manage their blood sugar levels, blood pressure and oxygen therapy better. In addition, allows patients to receive proactive advice on when they should see their physicians based on their blood pressure readings or blood oxygen levels.
The Potential of Telemedicine in India
Telemedicine has the potential to reach out to patients and physicians in the remotest corners of the country. It can provide timely access to specialist care for patients who currently have no access to physicians or facilities with the capabilities needed for treatment. Telemedicine can also reduce costs and provide preventive care by reducing hospitalization.
The Indian government is taking steps towards expanding telemedicine infrastructure. The Department of Telecommunications (DoT) has issued guidelines that allow for frequency spectrum for telemedicine services and is considering proposals for satellite-based connectivity to ensure the availability of bandwidth in rural areas. The Indian Government has published Telemedicine Practice Guidelines (“Telemedicine Guidelines”) on March 25, 2020. These guidelines finally clarify India’s position on the legality of teleconsultation.
Telemedicine is the use of electronic information and telecommunication technologies to support long-distance clinical health care system.
In India, the importance of Tele ICU in Chronic Management Protocols has come to the fore in recent years. Chronic diseases are fast becoming a major health challenge for the country. According to the Global Burden of Disease study, chronic diseases account for 63% of all deaths worldwide, and by 2020, approximately 70% of all deaths will be due to chronic diseases. In India, according to World Health Organization (WHO), chronic diseases are responsible for an estimated 57% of all deaths and 44% of the total disease burden. Telemedicine is an invaluable tool that helps to ensure that patients with chronic conditions receive optimal care.
eNext Tele-ICU is bringing the change in the management of Chronic Diseases through its innovative remote monitoring solution, which can help in the early diagnosis and treatment of Chronic Diseases.