Recently recognized in the Kokomo Tribune for its innovative community paramedicine program, Community Howard Regional Health chose the HealthCall® platform to manage its community paramedicine program. This initiative provides support and education to at-risk patients discharged from the hospital with chronic health concerns.
Community Howard is equipping its paramedics with cutting edge solutions to help transition patients back into their homes following a surgery or procedure. Paramedics visit patients with chronic pulmonary or heart diseases in their homes with the goal of making a positive impact on the patient’s health and reducing the need for a 911 call or emergency visit.
“We know that it can be difficult for patients with chronic diseases to properly manage their health once they are back home,” said Joe Hooper, president, Community Howard. “By having one of our licensed paramedics go out to a patient’s home, and sit with them and talk through how to best manage their disease, we will be better able to help give the patient the tools they need to improve their disease.”
Patients with chronic conditions are entered into the HealthCall cloud-based platform and assigned to a Care Program relating to their disease or condition. Care Programs serve as a guide to both paramedics and patients in following best practices and developing healthier self-care skills. These programs consistently help patients achieve better outcomes and improve overall wellbeing.
All patients discharged from Community Howard receive a phone call within 24 hours after discharge to check on the status of the patient’s health and to answer their questions. Patients identified as needing more in-depth follow-up will now be visited by a paramedic through this program three days after their discharge.
In the home, paramedics provide education, identify barriers to improved health, assess the home for safety issues and make referrals to community resources as needed.
As paramedics complete health assessments within HealthCall, their reports detailing the patient’s health status and wellbeing are immediately shared securely with the patient’s care team ; i.e., discharge planner, case manager, the physician such as a cardiologist, and other members of the patient’s care team. Through traditional programs, paramedics previously manually prepared reports and submitted them to the hospital, taking critical time from other duties performed by these professionals.
Mark Jacobs, EMS Manager, said, “Our ambulance crews are often called to patients’ homes because of complications from chronic diseases. HealthCall empowers our paramedics and fire ambulance teams to help avoid these complications through better health management.”