Tag Archives: eHealth

mHealth trends

In this digital era healthcare industry is changing towards a more mobile and efficient system: mHealth is the future. What are the ongoing trends in this industry? An article in the Beckers Hospital review gives a top 10. I would like to highlight some items:

“Mobile devices and apps are becoming an integral part of telemedicine. Telemedicine crosses the geographic expanse and connects providers to patients, even providers to other providers, to extend services to underserved areas. Many major telemedicine companies are offering telemedicine apps as a means for patients to connect and communicate with physicians remotely and on-the-go. It’s an increasingly popular service — 84 percent of young adults age 18 to 34 said they would prefer a consultation via a mobile device. While more hospitals and health systems are toying with telemedicine, the service is also coming under fire as the industry debates payment and reimbursement practices and what telehealth services should be used for.”

As a telemedicine company, we think further than only digital consultation. We understand that if patient, non-patient or care professional need support, that can be provided by technical solutions. Like support with medication treatment or monitoring heart rhythm after an operation.

The cost benefits of mHealth may be enormous. If a patient is tracking his or her symptoms and those symptoms are being wirelessly transmitted to a clinician in the hospital, that patient just saved a trip to the clinic and the hospital saved costs associated with treating that patient. With mHealth comes a more comprehensive, accessible and data-driven industry that helps utilize resources more efficiently and effectively.”

Vitaphone Netherlands daily collects thousands of vital signs and presents the results to healthcare professionals and sometimes patients too. Further investigation might translate all these efforts into a financial result.

Author: Indy Kavelaars

Source: Beckers Hospital Review

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Infographic: Long Term Care

A shift is taking place in long term care (ltc). This infographic visualizes this change with focus on the US.

Highlights are:

  • The number of people using ltc facilities will increase to 27 million in 2050;
  • Tech spending is on the rise: budgets for 2014 grew and this budget will go toward new investments;
  • 54% of the ltc organization respondents say technology decreases medical errors;
  • 73% state that it improves productivity;
  • A whopping 99% believe that technology helps them enhance overall care.

What is your opinion about technology in your healthcare organization? Tell us what you think.




Author: Indy Kavelaars
Source: CDW Healthcare

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Sensors and beyond

cerebrospinal fluid

cerebrospinal fluid

“A novel long-term implanted sensor can measure and individually adjust cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) pressure in the brain.” In this stage the sensor still needs an external device connected with radio waves. In the external device the physician can read the temperature and CSF pressure. If the pressure exceeds the limits, the physician will act accordingly. In the future it will actually work on its own and adapt when needed. This is the ultimate example of mobile health.

This great (and a bit scary) look into the future, that shows us what we’re aiming at. What healthcare community also needs to do, is look at the currently available technology and use it now. So we can make a difference and improve citizen’s care!

Source: Hospimedica

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INFOGRAPHIC: Healthcare IT trends for 2014

Have a look at this great overview! Some highlights:

  • $36 billion will be saved, in the next 5 years, by utilizing remote monitoring in patients with cardiac & chronic diseases;
  • 1.3 million Americans will be treated via telehealth by 2017;
  • 81% of the healthcare providers plan to make future investments in telehealth.

Our message to healthcare community; don’t wait any longer! Start with the implementation of current available solutions. Let’s make Telehealth and Remote Monitoring reality…and not a promise in an infographic!


2014 Health IT Trends Infographic Healthcare

2014 Health IT Trends Infographic Healthcare

Source: CDW community

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Full european support for eHealth!

Despite the economic crisis, the global telemedicine market grew from $9.8 billion in 2010 to $11.6 billion in 2011. The global mHealth market is even set to grow to €17.5 billion a year by 2017.

There is important support from the European Parliament for the eHealth Action Plan 2012-2020. Neelie Kroes, Vice President of the European Commission leading the digital agenda, said: “In particular, I welcome the Parliament’s insistence on the importance of interoperability of eHealth systems and the need for the Commission to take a leading role in establishing international standards and an EU eHealth Interoperability Framework.” We also think this should be top priority. It is very important that there is an interoperability standard for telemedicine because only with such a standard, all eHealth, mHealth, telemonitoring and telemedicine providers will and can work together to make care and cure more efficient. Some EU countries spend up to 15% of their budgets on healthcare; this percentage needs to go down. eHealth implementations can help to make that happen!

Source: eHealthNews

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Health IT and e-health will dramatically change the future healthcare

In a comprehensive review of literature, including previously published systematic reviews and relevant individual studies, the authors predict that health IT and e-health will dramatically change the future of healthcare.

They estimate that if 30 percent of the community-based physicians’ offices fully implement health IT, the demand for physicians would be reduced by about 4-9 percent. We think that a fully implemented IT will lead to better exchange of health information with the result that possible interventions will happen earlier in the care process. Through delegation of care to nurse practitioners and physician assistants, enabled by health IT, the demand for physicians will reduce by another 4-7 percent. Similarly, IT-supported delegation from specialist physicians to generalists could reduce the demand for specialists by 2–5 percent. The use of health IT could also help address regional shortages of physicians by potentially enabling 12 percent of care to be delivered remotely. These estimated impacts could more than double if health IT systems were adopted by 70 percent of the US ambulatory care delivery settings.

We know that e-health and health-IT will change healthcare. We are convinced that the biggest change will happen in self-monitoring. When this self-monitoring gets connected to health IT and e-health systems, the changes will become even more dramatic.

Author: Indy Kavelaars @ Vitaphone Netherlands
Source: The Impact Of Health Information Technology And e-Health On The Future Demand For Physician Services by  Jonathan P. Weiner, Susan Yeh and David Blumentha

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Telemonitoring reduces the number of hospital days by 87 percent!

ECG Telecardiologie

Open de Nederlandse versie >

Research at the Scheper Hospital in Emmen, The Netherlands, shows that telemonitoring of chronic heart failure gives great improvements in several areas. The research took 2 years and included more than one hundred patients with an impaired cardiac pump function.

The care process for these patients was very differently planned through telemonitoring or remote care. The patients did daily monitoring of their weight, blood pressure and heart rate and sent these vital signs to the heart failure clinic. Through these daily monitoring, preventive and proactive actions were taken by the care professionals. This resulted in:

  • a decrease in the number of admissions per patient by 26 percent;
  • a decrease in the total number of admissions with 64 percent;
  • a reduced number of outpatient visits with 39 percent;
  • a lower average number of hospital days; a decline of 87 percent!

This is a conformation that telemedicine is effective. It also shows the possibilities of a different care model like remote care monitoring. The financial results will be published in an analysis next year. The portfolio of Vitaphone is even more extensive: we additionally offer tele-ECG monitoring. The ECG will directly be sent with or without a report to the treating physician. This means that the care professional already can act even when there are no actual symptoms or problems yet.

I like to close this blog with a quote from the cardiologist, Michiel Nagelsmit: “The deployment of e-health makes it possible for us to provide care to a larger number of patients with chronic heart failure in same available time.”

Author: Indy Kavelaars @ Vitaphone Netherlands

Source: Scheper Ziekenhuis

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Infographic: eHealth

De eHealth monitor is een jaarlijks terugkerend onderzoek welke door NIVEL en Nictiz wordt uitgevoerd. Hierin wordt gekeken in hoeverre eHealth wordt ingezet in Nederland. Belangrijke punten uit de onderstaande infographic zijn:

  • Vergeleken met andere landen zijn we verder met het praktisch gebruik van eHealth toepassingen
  • Zelfmanagement schept vooral positieve verwachtingen bij deskundigen
  • eHealth is nu vooral nog een lappendeken van experimenten
  • eHealth voor zelfmanagement wordt nog weinig gebruikt. Slechts 2% van de ondervraagden gebruikt een herinnering voor medicijninname op een telefoon
  • Volgens dit onderzoek is een van de eerste stappen die gezet moet worden: “Geef patiënten meer inzicht in hun medicatiedossier”. Wij denken dat het ondersteunen van de medicatie trouw een gemakkelijker te behalen doel is. De technologie is er al, nu nog de financiering!

20130925-Infographic eHealth-monitor 2013

Author: Indy Kavelaars
Bron: Nictiz

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Chances and speed bumps eHealth

Dutch healthcare seems to be well organized, but still many things can improve. Patient safety level, focus on patient oriented care and the overall costs are examples of current targets. The implementation of ICT and eHealth can realize improvements! In the Netherlands 4,5 million people live with 1 or more chronic diseases. (source: Landelijk Informatie Netwerk Huisartsenzorg 2003-2007).

For some years now eHealth holds great promise, but a widespread application in the healthcare system is not yet there. Why is that?

First, let’s discuss why eHealth holds great promise. There are great advantages of eHealth implementation because it will shift the control of wellbeing and care to the patient. The patient or the healthy citizen will get more options to ensure their own wellbeing. An example is telemonitoring by patients with cardiac failure: this results in less readmissions, less visits to the emergency department and less uncertainties for patients.

With eHealth technology, caregivers have the right information at the right time and place. This is essential to provide high quality and effective care. There is a catch thought; if the technological changes are not synchronized with the organizational changes it will not reach the expected benefits.

EHealth makes it easier to exchange information with the care professional. This ensures the continuity of a care process. One can control the care objectives and customize the care to better fit the objectives.

EHealth makes healthcare more accessible. Video conferencing with a doctor is much easier and quicker than a normal appointment. Of course there has to be an opportunity to visit the physician, but how easy it is just to video conference from your own home.

Maybe the most important advantage is that eHealth empowers people to control their own health and healthcare. This is also an element of the Chronic Care Model (CCM) which is the international standard for chronic healthcare.

So one might wonder: why is eHealth not yet widely spread within the healthcare? There are several different speed bumps in the road for the implementation of eHealth. Privacy is a big issue; only the right people can have access to the relevant information. Many physicians are worried about the doctor-patient relation. Another bottleneck is the interoperability of different information systems used within the same organizations and between different organizations.

Healthcare budgets are under pressure and I believe that eHealth is the solution if correctly implemented!


Author: Indy Kavelaars

Sources: Landelijk Informatie Netwerk Huisartsenzorg & NYFER

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