Intermountain Healthcare in Salt Lake City has revealed that it is growing its home-based service offerings this year to include primary care, some traditional hospital-level services and palliative care for individuals with chronic or serious conditions.

This is made possible through the launch of its new program called Intermountain at Home. The overarching goal of the initiative is to shorten or prevent hospital admissions and allow patients to get care in their homes.

The Salt Lake City system added home-based nursing services back in 1982. Today, its Intermountain Homecare & Hospice program supports patients with home-based post-hospital care, palliative care, end-of-life care and medical equipment maintenance.

Intermountain at Home, which expands on Intermountain Homecare & Hospice services, will include the following: home check-ups with a PCP or advanced practice clinician; remote monitoring; virtual urgent care visits through Intermountain Connect Care; appointment video visits; dialysis and intravenous medication; and physical therapy. The program will also include support through Homespire, an Intermountain company that helps seniors live independently.

“Providing these types of services in the home versus a traditional hospital setting has been proven to be effective in reducing complications, rehospitalizations and trips to emergency departments while cutting the overall cost of care by 30 percent or more,” Intermounatin chief nursing officer of community-based care Rebekah Couper-Noles said in a statement. “This could result in benefits to our patients and our community including better quality of life, better access to healthcare and lower healthcare costs.”

Aside from Intermountain, other health systems are working to ensure patients stay healthy when they’re outside the four walls of the hospital.

Ochsner Health System in Louisiana, for example, teamed up with Geneva Health Solutions last year on an effort involving remote monitoring of cardiac device patients. GHS offers data management and remote monitoring for implantable cardiac devices. As part of the collaboration, GHS’ cloud-based technology platform and remote monitoring service will help Ochsner’s patients with cardiac device implants in Louisiana, Arkansas, Mississippi, Alabama and Georgia.

And a few months ago, NewYork-Presbyterian Hospital said it will expand its virtual care capabilities with remote monitoring services from Philips. The hospital’s affiliated doctors at Weill Cornell Medicine will use Philips’ eCareCoordinator platform (which lets clinicians remotely keep an eye on patients’ vital signs and send them short surveys about their health status) and eCareCompanion tool (which allows patients to use a tablet and connected medical devices to share their health information with their care team).

Picture: Natali_Mis, Getty Images

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