How Does the m.Care Platform Support Prevention, Diagnosis and Treatment of COVID-19?
As the coronavirus (COVID-19) continues to spread, telehealth has an increasing and vital role to play in containing and mitigating the disease. The m.Care telehealth platform is designed to produce optimum results during a health crisis like COVID-19.
During times of uncertainty and fear, humans look for accurate information and assurance. During a pandemic, the need to avoid others can have a dramatic impact on healthcare. Our traditional healthcare system is grounded on in-person visits to doctors’ offices, clinics and hospitals, especially for those with serious illnesses and the elderly.
But that is precisely the behavior we strive to avoid in preventing the spread of a deadly virus. That is where the m.Care virtual care platform comes in.
Education Is Critical During a Pandemic. Easy Access to Reliable Information Builds Knowledge, Confidence, and Eases Stress and Worry
Access to reliable information, and the ability to easily speak with a healthcare provider, are critical to prevention during a pandemic. Understanding symptoms, knowing how to avoid infection and prevent transmission are empowering and critical to mitigating the effects of a pandemic.
One of the core components of the m.Care virtual care platform is access to realtime information from both your personal healthcare provider, and from reliable sources like the CDC. With one click on the m.Care app, users have a wealth of information at their disposal.
With another click, they are video chatting, real-time, with a member of their care team. Do they have a question they want answered? They can leave a chat message and it will be responded to quickly. Do they need to show a setting on an in-home medical device, or have a question about a color change or new skin growth? They can show it to their healthcare team for feedback…all while avoiding a trip to a doctor’s office, clinic or emergency room.
During a pandemic, this is crucial – especially for older patients, remote patients and those patients who are practicing social distancing. It removes the possibility of personal infection as well as exposing others to infection. Both points are crucial to preventing spread.
Diagnosis, Monitoring and Symptom Management – While Safely Isolated
Diagnosis, symptom management and real-time clinical monitoring of individuals who are symptomatic is essential to prevent further transmission.
The CDC notes that individuals with multiple chronic conditions (hypertension, diabetes, cardiovascular disease), and especially those over 60 years old, may be at higher risk for COVID-19. Without a virtual care platform like m.Care, these patients, especially the elderly (and families of elderly), face gut-wrenching decisions about traveling to a medical facility for appointments.
Yet, the need for these patients to receive timely care can be lifesaving. For patients within the m.Care platform community, they get the care they need at home. This enables high quality, real-time healthcare, while avoiding the risk of exposure and transmission. Mitigation of spread is accomplished, while maintaining quality of care, and without compromising safety for the entire community.
Empowering the at-home individual to diagnose is critical as we combat COVID-19. m.Care has created Coronavirus surveys for m.Care community members to complete and submit to their care team.
Symptom surveys help low-risk individuals avoid unnecessary trips to doctor offices and clinics. It also can provide real-time response from care teams for those who score at-risk. Confirming tests can be recommended, and directions on where to best complete a test, perhaps via a low-touch drive through location, can further the effort to monitor, while isolating. Care can then be quickly escalated for those who require it.
Examples of m.Care on-screen survey questions:
Care Team Surveys
Providing quality care requires a healthy care team population. m.Care also provides surveys for care team members, requiring them to be invested in both their own care and that of their team members. Many care providers are so patient focused, they will postpone self-care during a crisis. The m.Care platform requires them to complete ongoing surveys for early detection of risk. If a risk threshold is met, managers are notified to minimize spread among care teams.
Predictive, Automated Monitoring
What makes the m.Care platform even more powerful is its proactive, predictive technology. A non-symptomatic individual can become symptomatic quickly. By taking a temperature daily and inputting the results into the app, an auto-alert can be set up to notify the care team when a threshold is met.
For example, a temperature reading of 100.4 or more, two times within 30 minutes, will automatically trigger an alert that will flash on the assigned team member’s screen. The alert then requires a proactive response – it cannot be merely x’d out – before it can be removed. The individual will be contacted quickly by their care team to discuss next steps.
Highly sensitive, predictive agents are being developed and tested that will factor in temperature, blood pressure, heart rate and oxygen levels. These predictive agents will help reduce clinician time spent monitoring data, relieving staffing shortages, while also predicting high-risk individuals.
Mental Health Support
A real concern during a pandemic is the onset of fear, worry, stress and anxiety.
As worry increases, emotional and psychological responses increase. Incidences of irrational behavior surface. It is a human response to feel as though one has contracted a virus when anxiety sets in. This can exacerbate the strain on our healthcare system. That system – for both medical and mental health – can become overwhelmed.
Hence, we focus on “flattening the curve” to mitigate pressure on the system, and to extend the timeline to create infrastructure and find a vaccine. Part of that “flattening” includes providing the mental health support people need during a pandemic.
While m.Care already supports mental health care providers, it created COVID-19 specific surveys and information access to ease uncertainty and build knowledge. Importantly, it can provide HIPAA-compliant, live video chats with mental health specialists to provide treatment.
The same survey and auto-alert system is also incorporated into the mental health support component of the m.Care platform. For example, an individual answers “1” on their daily survey when asked “On a scale of 1 to 5, how are you feeling today? 5 means ‘Amazing,’ 1 means ‘Terrible and Need Help.’” An alert can be programmed for a mental health professional to immediately call the client. Another example is the system can recognize text in the notes section. For example, if the system sees the word “suicide” or “depressed” it can trigger an immediate alert for a mental health professional to contact the individual immediately.
The Need For Speed to Provide Access to Virtual Care For All
The m.Care solution is in use today, helping healthcare providers deliver safe, effective care to their patient population. The question now is, how do we expedite this virtual care technology to everyone?
Learn more about how m.Care can help you:
- Improve patient care
- Lower your costs
- Distinguish your services
- Become more preemptive instead of reactive