Three ways homecare can help improve patient health, well-being

Woman looking at her phone

By Leigh-Ann Charles

Homecare and personal care professionals face a variety of challenges as they work to improve aging-in-place opportunities for their patients. Today, these healthcare professionals face more complex issues and challenges.

Here are three ideas that can help your organization deliver better care to underserved and aging populations:

  1. People want to stay in their homes, remain connected and in control of their health and be provided with convenient and cost-effective solutions to managing their healthcare. Personalized digital tools, such as mobile apps and smartphones, make it easy to request physician appointments, check-in, view medical results and conduct medical appointments without leaving home. Additionally, these tools are equipped to gather, analyze and predict health outcomes based on trends seen over time. Smartwatches, for example, can detect heart arrhythmias as well as atrial fibrillation through an electrocardiogram (ECG) sensor. Having this reporting at the patient’s fingertips enables them to take better control of their health and helps ensure the healthcare provider has the information necessary to make informed, potentially real-time treatment choices.
  1. Voice-activated device use has been on the rise since smartphones and smart speakers were first released and, more importantly, will become an effective tool in searching for and navigating healthcare information. Approximately 44% of adults use voice search daily, 19% use Siri at least once a day and as of 2020 it was expected 75% of U.S. households would have at least one smart speaker, demonstrating that voice-activated devices are becoming an essential part of life for many. Optimizing healthcare marketing campaigns and landing pages for voice can make it easier to access important health-related information for people with disabilities, less tech-savvy individuals and those with language barriers. Additionally, using local voice search on widely available online search sites and services can help guide individuals to healthcare resources available nearby, including meal delivery, non-emergency medical transportation, remote patient monitoring and personal care.
  1. Managed care organizations (MCO) rely on member data to provide appropriate healthcare services and meet network quality indicators. Evidence-based programs that meet Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services indicators and enhance the visibility of patient risk are of the greatest value as they help improve patient care. While bundled services are in demand, programs that demonstrate quality, including reporting on employee attendance and turnover, are more valued as they provide greater transparency in understanding member satisfaction.

While aging in place, voice-activated devices and healthcare data aren’t especially new ideas or concepts, organizations with the ability to differentiate themselves by showing proficiency through expertise and the capacity for excellence have a demonstrable advantage.

Healthcare service providers with this ability show the organization is informed, interested and ready to work with health systems, MCOs and the individuals they support.

Leigh-Ann Charles, MPH is Social Determinants of Health, National Product Manager, Food Team at Modivcare.