June 27, 2019 – St. John’s, NL: Rural communities on the Northern Peninsula and in Labrador will now benefit from access to technology that allows health-care providers to receive key health information about patients remotely. The ability to receive accurate, up-to-date health measurements – such as blood sugar levels, heart rate and other health information – from patients in their homes enhances a health-care provider’s capacity to deliver care and support between visits.
“We are pleased to partner with Labrador-Grenfell Health on this latest step forward for our provincial remote patient monitoring program, which allows health-care providers to manage treatment much more appropriately in near real-time, similar to regular in-person visits,” said Ron Johnson, Vice-President, Information Services and Rural Health for Eastern Health. “Through this program, we are able to provide coaching, education and support to help patients gain the skills needed to reach health goals and improve quality of life, while staying in their communities.”
To date, the in-home technology has been delivered to patients in the communities of Englee, Plum Point, Green Island Cove, Labrador City, Mary’s Harbour, and Happy Valley-Goose Bay. So far, 29 new patients in these communities have enrolled in the program and initial reports of its performance are positive.
“Labrador-Grenfell Health is pleased to continue the expansion of remote patient monitoring in our region. This technology allows our staff to provide care and support to patients while the patient remains in the comfort of their home. Remote patient monitoring assists patients, families and health-care providers connect and provides primary care services while overcoming some of the unique geographical challenges of the region,” Donnie Sampson, Vice-President, Clinical Services for Labrador-Grenfell Health.
The technology includes touch-screen tablets and other monitoring equipment – such as blood pressure monitors, weigh scales, and glucometers, depending on treatment requirements – for placement in patient homes, and communicates directly through the cellular network and internet with health care providers’ offices.
Expanding the technology on the Northern Peninsula and in Labrador was supported by the provincial Department of Health and Community Services and Canada Health Infoway. Canada Health Infoway works with partners to accelerate the development, adoption and effective use of digital health solutions across Canada.
“Our partnership with Newfoundland and Labrador is giving people better access to care, empowering patients and improving health outcomes,” said Michael Green, President and CEO, Canada Health Infoway. “It’s part of our ACCESS 2022 movement that envisions a future where all Canadians have better access to care through the availability and use of digital health tools and services. Investments in these programs also create significant value for our health system — for every $1 invested, the health system sees $4 in value.”
The expansion of the remote patient monitoring program aligns with Eastern Health’s 2017-2020 Strategic Plan –Lighting the Way: Navigating Together and demonstrates the organization’s commitment to improving access to quality, safe and accessible health services for residents.
About Eastern Health
Eastern Health is the largest, integrated health authority in Newfoundland and Labrador employing approximately 13,000 dedicated employees, over 600 medical staff, and is supported by more than 2,000 volunteers, including members of numerous auxiliaries and fundraising foundations. With an annual budget of approximately $1.5 billion, the authority offers the full continuum of health and community services including public health, long-term care, community services, hospital care and unique provincial programs and services. Serving a population of over 300,000, Eastern Health’s geographic boundaries extend from St. John’s west to Port Blandford including all communities on the Avalon, Burin and Bonavista Peninsulas.
About Labrador-Grenfell Health
Labrador-Grenfell Health is one of Newfoundland and Labrador’s four public health authorities which covers Labrador and all communities north of Bartlett’s Harbour on the Northern Peninsula. With an annual budget of approximately $195 million, the authority provides quality health and community services to approximately 37,000 people inclusive of three indigenous groups: Innu First Nation, Inuit, and Southern Inuit. With approximately 1,500 employees and over 250 volunteers throughout the region, Labrador-Grenfell Health operates 22 facilities, including three hospitals, three community health clinics, 14 community clinics and two long-term care facilities.
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