For those successfully managing chronic conditions, visits are generally uneventful and consist of checking and charting vitals – something that RCM can easily provide3. Through RCM, health vitals such as blood pressure, weight, blood glucose, heart rate, and oxygen levels can be easily measured by patients in the convenience of their home using devices that are designed for this purpose. These devices have become sophisticated enough to automatically transfer the measurements to patients’ phones and other smart devices, which then allow the data to be shared with their care provider (PCP, other healthcare professional, caregiver, or family member). Many digital health applications also keep a log of the vitals for patients and their care providers to see trends over time as well as the ability to set up alerts so that if any vital goes above a patient-specific threshold, the care provider is alerted and can take immediate action if needed.
With RCM, the time spent away from the doctor can now be used as an opportunity to measure and track vitals, medications, and wellness. For users in rural communities, this can go a long way towards eliminating the hassle of face-to-face check-ins with their healthcare provider. By integrating RCM with the care provided in rural communities, the access to care increases, the emphasis of care shifts to maintaining wellness, and the gap that once existed closes as patients have ownership over their care and personal health.
1Cost of Care Survey, 2019. Genworth. Retrieved on November 15, 2020, from https://www.genworth.com/aging-and-you/finances/cost-of-care.html
2Syed, S. T., Gerber, B. S., & Sharp, L. K. (October 2013). Traveling Towards Disease: Transportation Barriers to Health Care Access. U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health. Retrieved on October 10, 2020, from https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4265215/
3Turner-Lee, N. ( Summer 2019). Can Emerging Technologies Buffer the Cost of In-Home Care in Rural America? Generations: Journal of the American Society on Aging. Retrieved on December 8, 2020, from www.jstor.org/stable/26760121