Managing Chronic Disease at home with Telehealth
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Managing Chronic Disease at home with Telehealth

December 3, 2019

[Music plays] (Prof Branko Celler) The
population is ageing. Those aged over 65 will double and those aged over 85 will
quadruple in the next 20-years. Chronic disease at
present consumes over 70 per cent of the
total healthcare budget and is growing so rapidly
that it could consume all of the States budgets
within 20-years. Telehealth is one of the best
ways of trying to reduce hospitalisation,
therefore, hospital costs. The Telehealth system
is basically a monitoring system with
quite a large screen to help guide the patient through
the different procedures. Typically, the process
takes 20-minutes. Patients take their
blood pressure, they record their blood oxygen, their blood glucose, their electrocardiogram,
their body temperature, their body weight and they answer a
number of clinical questionnaires. This data is then gathered and
sent off, almost immediately, to a remote website to become
visible to the care team. The data is collected in real-time and
can be viewed almost immediately, particularly for patients
connected to a broadband system. (Lay Yean Woo) I monitor
my clients once a day and looking at reviewing
all the data entries that have been
transmitted to me. It is quite straightforward and
it is a very easy process. I can see the information
in real-time, I can monitor them, following
up with a phone call if there’s any issues
with their health. [Lay Yean Woo talking to patient] Also with the time
that has been freed up for me I can look at more new clients being
referred to me. (Prof Branko Celler) The trial
targets chronically ill patients that have complex
chronic conditions that tend to take them to
hospital multiple times a year. They begin to self-manage and
this is really important, because this has been
demonstrated to be very effective in helping to keep
patients out of hospital. So the patients are a key player in the total management of
their chronic condition. (Bill) I jumped on
it straightaway, when Lay came to me and said
would we like to do it? And there was no hesitation. Before she was going
to the doctors two or three times a week and now she only goes
once every three weeks. And with the help
of this monitor I don’t get so scared anymore. Before I was wondering if
it’s safe to leave the house, because many times I’ve
come home and she’s been laying on the floor,
or she’s injured herself. And it takes a lot of
pressure off your GP. This way you don’t need
to go down there if it’s only something minor. (Prof Branko Celler) If Telehealth
is to be scaled up nationally we need to have a way of
being able to identify changes in patient health
status on a daily basis. CSIRO’s developing some very interesting new
tools to facilitate this, and to allow nurses
to understand the patients’ condition
on a day by day basis. (Bill) I can’t thank her enough for what she’s done for Janice
and what the machine has done. [Music plays]

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  1. This is a trial which could alter the way health care is provided on a day to day basis. Having taken part in this trial for some time now I am  convinced, I adopted will greatly improve the care chronically ill patients in a cost effective way.  

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