AT&T has launched new cloud-based remote patient monitoring technology that is delivered as software-as-a-service from Ericsson, HealthTechZone recently reported. Part of AT&T's ForHealth suite of RPM services, the SaaS offering is designed to help doctors monitor their patients over video on a tablet connected to the Internet, providing coaching, reminders and health education to help better manage chronic diseases remotely without requiring a return hospital visit.
One of the benefits of AT&T RPM SaaS is that patients can use Bluetooth-enabled devices to check their vitals daily, and send the data to a cloud-based system that healthcare providers can access through a secure portal. In addition, during scheduled appointments, physicians can communicate with their patients via video.
Hospitals and other healthcare institutions moving data into the cloud is one of several trends to watch for health IT in 2013, according to AT&T. Another related 2013 trend, according to the company, will be remote patient monitoring moving from pilots to large-scale adoption as more hospitals adopt the accountable care organization model to reduce hospital readmission costs associated with chronic conditions. AT&T anticipates that the results of a pilot study using a cloud-based remote patient monitoring solution at Dallas-Fort Worth-based Texas Health Resources will indicate reduced congestive heart failure-related readmissions.
In related ForHealth news, AT&T Labs is working on a wireless asthma sensor, called Asthma Trigger, that scans the air for compounds that may cause asthma symptoms, alerting patients via mobile devices, according to GigaOM. The sensor feeds air quality data through AT&T's healthcare information data exchange platform, enabling patients to receive alerts on their devices.
AT&T also is working on other solutions for asthmatics, including GPS and Wi-Fi-equipped inhalers, to help doctors track their patients' usage and epidemiologists monitor broader trends.