Technology supports heart patients at home

EDMONTON, May 2, 2013 /CNW/ - A group of Albertans living with heart failure will have their conditions monitored right from their homes as part of an innovative pilot project. The pilot is a collaboration between the Alberta government, Alberta Health Services and GE Canada.

"We know Albertans want to spend less time in hospital and more time at home with their loved ones. That's why we're investing in initiatives like this, that allow patients to manage chronic conditions from home with the help of health care professionals," said Premier Alison Redford. "Our government is committed to health care innovation to provide better care, better outcomes and better value for Albertans."

The pilot, to be delivered through the Sherwood Park-Strathcona County Primary Care Network, will target about 250 patients over the age of 50 who are living with heart failure. Patients who are enrolled in the pilot will receive in-home technology developed by Intel-GE Care Innovations™ that will collect vital information, engage patients in their own care, and enable a team of health care practitioners to manage the patient care remotely.

"This new technology brings health care right into the home and that takes access and innovation to a whole new level," said Health Minister Fred Horne. "Remote monitoring strengthens links between patients at home and front-line primary care teams."

"This project incorporates innovation and technology to support our goal to improve access for Albertans," said Dr. Chris Eagle, President and CEO of Alberta Health Services. "This has the potential to provide those living with chronic conditions with comprehensive virtual care and also to explore a model of care which may lead to increased capacity in the health care system."

"We are excited to be involved in this pilot project. Our PCN has a history of using innovative technologies to enhance patient care, and we look forward to leveraging the benefits of this technology for our patients," said Dr. Moiz Ramji, Sherwood Park-Strathcona County Primary Care Network.

"This pilot project is an excellent example of how working collaboratively to develop and apply innovative in-home technology has the potential to transform healthcare delivery in Alberta, nationally and globally," said GE Canada president and CEO Elyse Allan.

"GE Healthcare strives to be at the forefront of the patient experience. Home health technology paired with our leading IT and consulting solutions will provide a unique GE Healthcare solution to help address cost, quality and access, which are some of Alberta's toughest healthcare challenges," said GE Healthcare Canada Vice-President and General Manager Peter Robertson.

"Transforming healthcare requires user-centered innovation grounded in real changes in business processes and clinical workflows, and we're thrilled to see this happening in the MyHome Health program," said CEO of Intel-GE Care Innovations™ Louis Burns. "Our technology platforms are designed to enable this necessary care transformation, and we're honoured to work with our Canadian partners to deliver more efficient and patient-centric models of care into the home."

The pilot project will accept applications for the program later this month, and after necessary approvals have been obtained. For more information on this program and patient eligibility, please visit www.myhomehealthcanada.com or contact 1-855-413-8770.

Image with caption: "Premier Alison Redford and Christine Schelstraete, Virtual Care Nurse, MyHome Health Program participate in demonstration of the in-home technology supporting heart patients. (CNW Group/GE Healthcare)". Image available at: http://photos.newswire.ca/images/download/20130502_C2901_PHOTO_EN_26292.jpg

SOURCE: GE Healthcare

For further information:

Media inquiries may be directed to:

Bart Johnson
Press Secretary
Minister of Health
780-427-3665
780-446-9190 (cell)
To call toll-free within Alberta dial 310-0000.

Kerry Williamson
Media Relations
Alberta Health Services
780-407-2602
780-905-5890 (cell)

Sarah Triantafillou
Communications Manager
GE Healthcare
905-301-3815
sarah.triantafillou@ge.com

Andrea Phare
Communications Coordinator
Sherwood Park-Strathcona County Primary Care Network
780-410-8053
andreap@sherwoodparkpcn.com


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