Telemedicine Can Change the Face of Nursing Homes
Some of the most common diagnoses in nursing homes are UTIs, bleeding, pneumonia, chest pain, and hypotension. Too often, these issues result in hospitalization, but that doesn’t have to be the case. If every nursing home adopted telemedicine and if tele-physicians and onsite staff coordinated their efforts, hospitalizations could be reduced by 70%.
The truth is that 83% of medical issues can be treated within the nursing home, but a lack of access to physicians and APRNs onsite means that conditions are not recognized quickly enough, and medical outcomes are poorer than they should be.
Statistically, 10% of post-acute patients who are admitted to nursing homes never see a physician. Sadly, these patients are 2x more likely to be readmitted to the hospital or even to die within the first 30 days. The median stay for post-acute patients is just 11 days, and this average is often driven by poor medical outcomes, rather than patients no longer needing skilled nursing care.
Having APRNs onsite and adopting telemedicine practices will help nursing homes to bring their facilities up to the necessary standards to give the best quality of care to their patients.
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