Telehealth technology improves patient care for this rural home health organization

Challenge

A small, rural home health organization in the Midwest knew there had to be a better way. The nurses and physical therapists there truly enjoy caring for patients, but redundant paperwork was causing concern. Mileage, hours, visit verification, patient charts—it all had to be completed for every patient visit, every day, by hand. There was no simple way to share patient information with other care providers, such as physical therapists. HIPAA and electronic visit verification (EVV) compliance were a constant concern, as well. Management wanted to keep nurses safe on the road and needed a reliable network with coverage in the rural areas where most of their patients live.

Solution

Administrators worked with their local UScellular™ Business Solutions Expert to determine what would be the optimal solution for the traveling medical staff. They chose cellular devices running on UScellular’s fast and reliable network, which works in the city and beyond, and the organization is now benefiting in a number of ways:

  • Nurses now use mobile forms on cellular-enabled tablets to update patient charts in minutes, which can include photos and signatures.
  • One-click submission makes reports available to the entire care team sooner.
  • Mobile forms are helping improve EVV compliance by letting nurses easily document each home visit’s location, date and time, duration, and patient name.
  • Mobile forms can also be encrypted, supporting HIPAA compliance.

The organization also invested in a fleet management solution. Nurses simply plug a small sensor into their car’s OBDII slot during each shift to share their location with management in near-real time. The device also automatically records mileage for reimbursement. And all these solutions run on a fast, reliable nationwide network.

Outcome

Nurses now spend less time on paperwork and more time with patients. Reporting accuracy has improved, too, and extended care teams are better informed. All of this has led to an enhanced level of patient care. Reports arrive faster, so submission and reimbursement can happen faster. Accurate mileage is saving the organization money on travel costs. More importantly, everyone feels better knowing that if a nurse should ever need assistance, management will know exactly where to send it. The organization is considering adding a secure messaging solution next, because they know the UScellular network works on the country roads where their nurses travel most.

 

Questions?

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