Bluetooth-enabled devices lower readmission rates and increase patient confidence.

WESTBURY, N.Y. (February 7, 2017)—Enhancing the telemonitoring services it has been delivering for more than a decade, the Northwell Health Home Care Network today announced an agreement with Hoboken, New Jersey-based Health Recovery Solutions (HRS) that provides homecare patients with Bluetooth-enabled tablets that can transmit their vital signs to their clinicians, as well as videoconferencing capabilities.

Through HRS’s advanced telemonitoring technology, Northwell homecare patients now have wireless, Bluetooth-enabled tablets that include a moveable video camera, blood-pressure and digital weight monitors, a pulse oximeter and a stethoscope. The device transmits vital sign and symptom information to patients’ physicians, nurses and family members in real time, and also triggers alerts for patients at high risk of a medical emergency.

Northwell is one of the first home care providers in the New York metropolitan area to provide Bluetooth-enabled telemonitoring capabilities, and the only one on Long Island.

Unlike the Northwell Home Care Network’s previous telemonitoring technology, which was integrated into a desktop computer, the portability of the new system provides clinicians with remote access to patients, enabling them to communicate 24/7, including on their mobile devices.

One very satisfied customer is Bernard Feinstein, of Little Neck, Queens, who turned 100 years old in November 2016. “It gives me comfort that somebody is checking on me; if my nurse sees something that’s not normal, I know she will reach out,” said Mr. Feinstein. “I have a wonderful relationship with my nurse and all the doctors in this program. I feel very blessed to be a part of this program.”

Mr. Feinstein’s wife, Charlotte, added, “We are not computer experts. We don’t even own a computer, but we can manage this very well. With this program, we don’t have to leave the apartment and go back-and-forth to doctor visits.”

In addition to the Bluetooth-enabled tablets, new telemonitoring features of HRS’s system include the digital weight monitor and a live-listening stethoscope that assesses patients’ heart and lung functions through video encounters on the tablets.

“The Northwell Health Home Care Network is committed to using technology to enhance patient outcomes while increasing patients’ involvement in their own health,” said Diane Asquino, RN, the agency’s director of patient services. “Telemonitoring is a wonderful tool to help reduce readmissions,” she said. “It engages the patient in managing their health by helping them to identify symptoms early. If they think something is wrong, they can notify their physicians immediately to reduce hospitalizations.”

 “We are thrilled to partner with an organization that recognizes telemonitoring as the future of home-based and outpatient care,” said HRS Chief Executive Officer Jarret Bauer.

Merryl Siegel, senior vice president and regional executive director of post-acute services at Northwell Health, added, “Together, Northwell Health Home Care and HRS are finding new ways to bring cutting-edge and compassionate care to all our patients.”

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