Last Updated | July 3, 2023
Overview – What Is Remote Patient Monitoring?
Patients may now remotely check their medical problems thanks to innovative technology, and as the size of the gadgets gets smaller and smaller, accessibility will only rise. A recent Deloitte study estimates that by the end of 2022, 320 million consumer health and wellness wearable devices will have been deployed globally, with a mind-boggling 440 million anticipated as early as 2024.
Such statistics make it difficult to ignore them, so let’s take a deeper look at what is remote patient monitoring, what is remote patient monitoring used for, and attempt to understand why it has gained such a huge following.
What Is RPM In Healthcare?
Digital technology is used in remote patient monitoring (RPM) to capture a patient’s medical and personal health information. The data is then sent to a healthcare physician for evaluation when a condition that needs to be addressed has been identified and information has been gathered.
The gathered information can be used by doctors for patient health monitoring and diagnostic purposes. In this way, remote patient monitoring benefits them to offer advice on health and wellness and modify the kind of drug or dose in response to the outcomes.
How Does Remote Patient Monitoring Work?
Weight scales, spirometers, oximeters, glucose meters, and weight monitors are some of the equipment utilized in RPM. Remote patient monitoring services do not need interactive audio-visual visits or virtual visits, merely mobile medical equipment and technology that delivers health-related information to the healthcare practitioner.
By receiving notifications in the case of a fall, remote patient monitoring in telehealth additionally assists medical professionals to maintain tabs on patients who are susceptible to losing their equilibrium. It allows keeping track of calorie intake and diet plans as well as monitoring those with addictions and drug abuse inclinations.
Let’s examine several remote healthcare monitoring process facts that are often known:
- A provider decides which condition should start a program to provide patients with maximum remote patient monitoring benefits, which cover weight, blood sugar levels, blood pressure, heart rate, and vital signs.
- A healthcare professional decides that a patient will benefit from remote physiologic monitoring for one or more of the several categories of health information that RPM can collect.
- RPM is prescribed or ordered by the practitioner with the patient’s permission.
- Devices for remote patient monitoring must be electrically connected, which is often done through Bluetooth or cellular networking. Pulse oximeters and ECG devices are two other device categories where RPM use is growing.
- Once the device is configured properly, health information is recorded by the equipment and sent, often electronically, on how to improve patient experience in hospitals for patients.
- Based on the analysis of this data, the practitioner provides the patient with recommendations and instructions for their health and wellness.
What Are The Benefits Of Remote Patient Monitoring?
There are so many benefits of remote patient monitoring (RPM), from enhancing patient self-management to lowering care delivery costs. These advantages range from increasing accessibility to virtual care to improving communication between patients and physicians. Here are a few for you;
- Improved patient-doctor relations
- Enhanced mental health
- Globalized patient revenue increase
- Supports the use of data to guide clinical decisions
- Take advantage of staff productivity to fight clinical staff shortages
- More hope for patients who suffer from chronic diseases and introducing new and innovative hospital patient flow best practices in the system.
What Are The Challenges Remote Patient Monitoring Face?
To understand what is remote patient monitoring in telehealth a step further, it is important to understand the following 5 challenges that RPM faces listed below;
1. Access To Real-Time Data
The next crucial component of RPM is real-time data availability. Real-time patient data monitoring is possible for healthcare practitioners. It’s useful in an emergency since it allows physicians to analyze the patients’ conditions and take immediate action.
2. Data Reliability
Data accuracy is arguably the most difficult issue impeding RPM adoption. Many of these issues are perception-based, affecting both patients and medical professionals.
Based on the available data, frontline medical staff will be required to make diagnoses and administer treatments to patients. To take the type of quick and immediate action required, especially when it comes to the treatment of chronic and sometimes deadly illnesses, they must also have the utmost confidence that it is accurate.
3. Integration of systems
Systems integration would not be as problematic if every healthcare provider in the globe utilize the same systems on the same network and find creative ways to increase patient satisfaction. Sadly, nothing could be further from the truth than that.
The addition of a remote monitoring platform would thus need to be handled very carefully to prevent the corruption of current patient information and to guarantee that any upcoming system migrations would not conflict with the RPM platform.
4. The RPM Price
The expense of implementing RPM in the healthcare sector may be the largest issue; charges per unit, license charges, and software costs are some examples. Another significant expense is the technical manpower needed to run and maintain the system.
The remote patient monitoring cost to teach the staff members how to utilize the new technology is another budgetary concern that suppliers need to handle. The majority of the time, while putting new software into the mix, organizations forget this crucial truth.
5. Devices’ Price
Hospitals may opt to deploy remote patient monitoring devices on their own rather than collecting data from an app or third-party device to attempt and lower security risk, learn more about how to implement a patient portal and simplify integration.
There is a variety of remote patient monitoring pricing associated with implementing, according to an analysis done in the US in 2016. The “combined intervention cost” (the entire cost of the device, including service and monitoring) ranged from $275 to $7,963 per patient across 13 different trials. In general, it ranges from £200 to £6,000. That is once more each patient.
Examples Of How Remote Patient Monitoring Is Used In Clinical Settings
Some of the most popular examples of remote patient monitoring devices on the marketplace today are included in this list of remote patient monitoring equipment.
A remotely operated pulse oximeter can offer crucial details regarding a patient’s oxygen saturation levels for those with inhibited pulmonary functions.
A remote patient monitoring thermometer enables patients and healthcare professionals to instantly identify and respond to alarming data. Regular temperature checks might reveal symptom patterns and signal whether anything is wrong.
Blood Pressure Monitors
Patients can transfer vital data to their healthcare professionals in real time with remote blood pressure monitors and get better patient scheduling workflow with their clinicians and hospitals. Monitoring blood pressure can aid in preventing heart attacks and strokes. By using one of these tools, you may help your doctor monitor your development, suggest lifestyle changes, and confidently and effectively alter your medication.
Blood Glucose Meters
Both patients and physicians should treat hypoglycemia seriously. For the approximately ten per cent of Americans who have diabetes, continuous monitoring is essential due to the risks of low blood sugar, which range from impaired vision to death. By instantly synchronizing pertinent medical data to the appropriate applications, devices like smart glucometers help diabetic patients and their doctors.
Stethoscope And ECG
Patients may comfortably check their cardiac activity on a regular basis at home thanks to this equipment. This technology not only helps patients save money but also motivates them to monitor their health more frequently.
The development of AI technology enables the rapid detection of anomalies. In the most severe cases, these gadgets could potentially help prevent heart attacks.
The spirometer may be the least prevalent of all the remote patient monitoring tools we’ve covered. It plays a crucial part in the diagnosis of lung disorders including asthma and COPD and precisely monitors the volume (i.e., amount) and/or flow (i.e., speed) of oxygen that a person may inhale or exhale.
Future Developments In Remote Patient Monitoring Technology
To understand what is remote patient monitoring even more you need to understand why use remote patient monitoring and the difference it can make for the future patient care system.
Researchers believe that telehealth has room to develop and that remote monitoring will become an increasingly important aspect of healthcare. The use of RPM in managing both chronic and acute diseases will increase as treatment continues to shift out of the hospital environment and into more home- and community-based settings.
Understanding what remote patient monitoring includes and how other pros and cons of patient portals can be handled remotely and monitored utilizing remote medical equipment is one area that needs more study. The chance to further pinpoint more contexts in which RPM adoption would be advantageous is another potential future route for the technology.
Although there are several RPM initiatives based in hospitals and health systems, there is room to expand RPM into less urgent settings like nursing homes or senior living facilities. Remote patient monitoring solutions might assist patients with chronic diseases more if it is tested and studied in places other than the home, which would also help patients avoid the need for more urgent treatment.
But bear in mind that the technology would be still new to patients which can hinder their ability to understand what is remote patient monitoring system in the beginning.
Conclusion – What is Remote Patient Monitoring
You can still encounter significant difficulty even after understanding yourself with all of the required knowledge on what is remote patient monitoring program is and why remote patient monitoring is important. Finding the remote patient monitoring system might be challenging, but if you work with top service providers, like us, you won’t have any issues at all.
FAQs – What is RPM?
What are the common problems with patient monitoring?
Alarm settings, complex artifacts, overload of data, tangled wires, difficulty switching between monitors produced by various manufacturers, and challenges related to human performance are some of the most frequent obstacles in patient monitoring today.
What conditions qualify for remote patient monitoring?
The patient must already be in contact with a provider, who could advise scheduling a regular physical examination, lab work, or other preventative care procedures. Additionally, the patient should have at least one RPM-monitored acute or chronic disease
Here is a list of a few common conditions RPM is used for;
- Weight loss or gain
- Heart disease
- Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease
Is remote patient monitoring expensive?
Yes, RPM solutions are very affordable for all parties concerned.