According to the National Academy of Medicine, consistent patient engagement can influence improved outcomes and reduce costs for chronic disease management. However, this participation “remains limited.”
Reasons for this vary.
Geographic barriers, poor communication between care providers and constituents, and a lack of patient focus can all contribute to muted engagement. These factors can further complicate the treatment of chronic conditions, especially when two or more are involved.
In this program, patients can engage their well-being daily by self-collecting relevant data, such as blood pressure or pulse. Providers can then leverage this data to help address an individual’s specific chronic conditions, continuously.
At ThoroughCare, we’ve worked with more than 600 clinics and physician practices to improve care coordination and patient communication through intuitive software solutions. We’ve helped many practices establish and scale RPM programs.
In this article, we’ll cover how active care management can help improve patient engagement rates for chronic disease management.
Care Management Programs for Chronic Conditions
Care management generally refers to activities that enhance coordinated health services.
Its broad goal is to personalize patient treatment and reduce hospital admissions through preventive measures. RPM and Chronic Care Management (CCM), another Medicare benefit, are examples of care management programs.
CCM and RPM can work together to support patient management beyond the practice office. Both programs require verbal enrollment and specific requirements in order to qualify as billable services. But in essence, both serve as formal mechanisms to regularly engage patients with regard to medication adherence, lifestyle interventions, and vital tracking.
Many of the program’s services easily facilitate these benefits. They naturally address them.
For instance, when your patient enrolls in a CCM program, they are agreeing to monthly interaction with your care team or a care manager. This increased level of engagement automatically expands access to clinical staff, which can improve the flow of information your patient receives.
For specific chronic conditions, such as complex diabetes, CCM can be an effective treatment when paired with telehealth and remote monitoring solutions, as we will cover below.
RPM for More Holistic Chronic Care
An RPM program can help engage patients by aligning their attention to their vital signs.
By emphasizing the daily collection of blood pressure or heart rate through a simple device, within seconds, you can focus your patient on their health, in near real-time. Sustained participation in RPM can then help create an ongoing awareness of one’s well-being.
With remote monitoring, your practice can more easily manage chronic conditions by focusing on underlying health indicators, such as blood pressure or blood glucose. The program supports the continuous observation of these vital signs, which can help you track any changes in a condition’s severity.
By isolating these vitals and capturing trends over time, your practice can gain greater insight as to how such indicators influence your patient’s health. This can help you prescribe treatments or interventions to better manage the chronic condition in question.
For example, Pure Cardiology, a practice located in Charlotte, NC, saw 100% of RPM-enrolled patients lower their A1Cs in three months of participation. A study published by the practice also notes that “average systolic blood pressure had been reduced by 12 mmHg per patient” in the same amount of time.
Software for Chronic Disease Management
Data collection enables your practice to spot emergency health issues before they happen.
Digital software solutions are available to help your practice embrace integrated care management for chronic diseases. At ThoroughCare, we’ve designed our integrated care coordination software for easy clinical use. It relies on an intuitive interface that allows you and your team to engage patients through multiple care management, telehealth, and wellness programs.