More than ever before, there is a need to provide medication management and chronic disease management to large segments of our population. Placing reminder, check-in, and chronic disease management programs directly in the hands of the family caregiver and patient is part of our mission to empower family caregivers.
Why the big need? Caregivers are often very stressed with jobs, their children, and aging parents. Tools to help juggle all these demands are needed.
There are now more caregivers than ever before. The “silver tsunami” is about to hit. By 2030, the number of Americans aged 65 and older is expected to exceed 75 million – which is 20% of the total population. While this term, tsunami, implies a disaster, it is more like a huge demographic, economic, and social shift that will have significant consequence to health care delivery. Most of all, it seriously increases the demand for the family caregivers who provide most of the informal care for our aging population.
Medication Management Through Reminder Calls
Why Manage Medications? One of the most common problems of disease management in the home setting is medication non-adherence. Not only can some drugs pose dangerous complications if not taken correctly, but also, the treatment of chronic conditions can be made less effective if medications are skipped or not taken as prescribed. The average rate of compliance is only 50% and noncompliance is associated with 70% of all medication-related hospital admissions at an estimated annual cost of $100 billion.
More people are taking medications than ever before in history and chronic conditions are more prevalent in the elderly. People over age 75 are taking an average of 12 different medications to manage their illnesses.
Healthcare organizations currently use some technology and home monitoring for patients. In one survey, 91% use technology to focus on patients with congestive heart failure. Sixty three percent said they use remote patient monitoring with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease and 59% use it for diabetes.
Studies show that remote patient monitoring provides significant benefits for chronically ill patients. Whether it is improved outcomes, reduced office visits, reduced emergency room visits or simply peace of mind, it is clear that much of the “treatment” for chronic conditions occurs on a day-to-day basis in the home setting. Applying technology to this milieu of care is essential.
SageMinder is a low-cost way to provide some of this home monitoring and medication compliance in a person’s home. Home nursing agencies have used monitoring devices that provide a similar service, but often, home nursing services are time-limited. With the SageMinder, this type of reminder and monitoring can be ongoing and affordable.
SageMinder Care Calls