Telehomecare Research Project Launched

Jun 5, 2012 8:30:24 AM

Mobile Phone-Based Telemonitoring as an Aid for Home Healthcare Nurses study

Schaumburg, IL (May 22, 2012) – ParaMed and CellTrak announce their support for an important new industry research project integrating the University Health Network's (UHN) telemonitoring system with the CellTrak system. This system provides home healthcare nurses with up-to-date client information for visits and timely intervention in case of deteriorating health.

The research will be conducted over the next two years through financial contributions from the National Science and Engineering Research Council (NSERC) Strategic Research Network in Healthcare Support through Information Technology Enhancements (hSITE).

During the first year of the multi-year project, the existing remote client monitoring system will be adapted for use by home healthcare nurses. The second year will be devoted to piloting the resulting system with ParaMed nurses.

ParaMed has deployed the CellTrak system, which provides encrypted transfer of data between the point-of-care and the backend servers. CellTrak's patented software-as-a-service solutions run on GPS-enabled mobile devices via a homecare technology platform which automates workflow and reduces cost. In particular, time and attendance, mileage records, travel times, visit times, care plans, and client information can be transferred. CellTrak enables communication between the home healthcare nurses and their local offices. ParaMed home healthcare nurses currently use BlackBerry mobile smart phone devices for CellTrak, which are compatible with an existing UHN telemonitoring system.

The new mobile telemonitoring system for chronic disease management has been developed at the Centre for Global eHealth Innovation, Techna Institute, University Health Network (UHN). The system was designed as a cost-effective tool to enhance client self-care and clinical management for various chronic diseases, including heart failure, hypertension, and diabetes.

"We've shown effectiveness of telemonitoring in acute care and primary care settings, but we are looking at new models of care centered in homecare in this study," says Dr. Joseph Cafazzo, Lead, Centre for Global eHealth Innovation, University Health Network.

Various client parameters (i.e. weight, blood pressure, symptoms, blood glucose, ECG) are sent with the use of wireless medical devices to a BlackBerry mobile phone. The BlackBerry then automatically sends the information to data servers. An appropriate message or instruction is sent back to the client, and necessary alerts are sent to a clinician's mobile phone. The efficacy of the telemonitoring system has been evaluated through randomized controlled trials in clinics and family physician practices, but its application for use by home healthcare nurses has not been explored.

CellTrak eliminates inefficient, error-prone paper-based reporting processes, and provides automated patient specific care plans and visit records. Combined with GPS mileage monitoring and automated visit verification CellTrak automates workflow, improves compliance, reduces costs and helps you improve outcomes at the point of care. This innovative approach to mobile health applications opens up a broad range of point of care solutions.

About University Health Network

University Health Network consists of Toronto General Hospital, Toronto Western Hospital, Princess Margaret Hospital and Toronto Rehabilitation Institute. The scope of research and complexity of cases at University Health Network has made it a national and international source for discovery, education and patient care. It has the largest hospital-based research program in Canada, with major research in cardiology, transplantation, neurosciences, oncology, surgical innovation, infectious diseases, genomic medicine and rehabilitation medicine. University Health Network is a research hospital affiliated with the University of Toronto. Techna, an institute of UHN in partnership with the University of Toronto, is designed to shorten the time interval from technology discovery and development to application for the benefit of patients and the health care system.

About ParaMed

ParaMed Home Health Care is a division of Extendicare (Canada) Inc., and was founded in 1974 and is a leading home care provider in Canada providing nursing, home support and therapy services for clients and families living in the community. With over 4,500 staff ParaMed is focused on creating "extraordinary experiences with incredible people". For more information please visit:

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