Digi and Almerys Develop Critical Cardiology Telehealth Application
Digi and Almerys, a subsidiary of Orange Business Services, helped develop and implement Cardiauvergne, a cardiology telehealth pilot project in the Auvergne region of France. The application performs in-home monitoring to collect a patient's weight daily and transfers it to a medical coordination unit where health care decisions are made. For patients suffering from heart disease, changes in body weight are a crucial indicator of their health and response to treatment. Remote monitoring for patient weight warning signs can avert emergency hospitalization, which improves patient outcomes and has massive cost-saving implications for health care systems worldwide.
Almerys needed to find a reliable way to network a large number of weighing scales located in patients' homes and to manage and communicate the data they collect in a certifiably secure process. The solution would enable the medical coordination unit to make immediate treatment decisions, without on-site patient visits.
Digi's ConnectPort® X3 programmable cellular gateway connects the scale at each patient location, records daily weight readings and sends the data to a medical coordination unit via the internet. For patient residences not covered by a 3G or RTT network, a Digi TransPort® WR41 router transfers the data via fixed-line telephone. Almerys monitors and manages the gateways using Device Cloud by Etherios™. Doing so keeps development costs low since the cloud platform carries no infrastructure costs and can easily be expanded to other regions as the program grows.
Since the pilot project began in September 2011, the system has monitored 315 patients. Cardiauvergne has responded to 600 alarms, with response actions ranging from calling the patient, dispatching medical personnel, or arranging emergency hospitalization.