Of the nearly 500,000 end-stage renal disease (ESRD) patients undergoing dialysis, only 12 percent receive dialysis in-home despite it being preferable and cost-effective to both patients and payers.[i] In a recent speech to kidney disease patients and advocates, Health and Human Services (HHS) Secretary, Alex Azar, stated that Medicare was making a concerted effort to expand the utilization of At-Home Dialysis, including expanding telehealth services.
While numerous studies have examined the use of telemedicine within surgical subspecialties, there has yet to be a study that looks at surgical care from a broader perspective. A recent systematic review aimed to do just that by providing an evidence based overview of telemedicine in surgical care.
The benefits of telehealth among patients with heart failure have been proven in the literature. Much of the research in this space focuses on using telehealth during episodes of home care. However, patients with heart failure can continue to benefit from remote monitoring after discharge from home care. A recent randomized controlled trial sought to confirm this hypothesis by exploring the efficacy of home telemonitoring with heart failure patients after the completion of home care.
Telemedicine continues to grow as a solution to increase access to healthcare. Patients living in rural areas stand to gain immense benefits from telehealth because it can reduce barriers related to cost and travel. A recent study sought to demonstrate the efficacy of telehealth in reducing these burdens for patients with diabetes living in rural Georgia and Alabama.
Telehealth has the potential to change the way patients are educated about their conditions. By using virtual modalities to educate patients, healthcare providers can improve accessibility and efficiency of care.
While the benefits of telehealth are well documented, best practices for telehealth have yet to be formally established. Telehealth users are often searching for best practices that will allow them to use telehealth to its fullest potential.
Postpartum women require a considerable amount of healthcare in the months following childbirth. In addition to attending to basic medical needs, it is also important that postpartum women optimize their weight status. Returning to a healthy weight after pregnancy can positively influence lifelong weight status, chronic disease risk, and offspring health.