Telehealth: Transforming Healthcare in our Rural Community

The challenges faced in rural communities when it comes to healthcare make it very difficult for healthcare workers to provide care, and for patients to receive care. In Curry County, Coastal Home Health & Hospice serves a coverage area of 1,627 square miles and a population of 22,364 individuals. Coastal Home Health & Hospice serves Curry County as a whole, which means our home health clinical staff meets the needs of our patients in each home.

Home healthcare includes a wide range of health and social services delivered in your home to treat illness or injury, but does not include caregiving services. In this rural community, it can be quite a challenge to get access to some of the homes. One of the biggest struggles that our staff members face is the lack of cell phone service.

However, home healthcare provides a critical service to our aging population, with approximately 34% of our population in the county within the retirement age.

Coastal Home Health & Hospice provides in home skilled nursing care, physical therapy, speech therapy, occupational therapy and social services to home bound individuals. In addition to these services, we are also transforming our home health treatment plans with 15 high tech Telehealth Machines, that will allow nurses access to the patients within their homes, remotely.

The Telehealth program connects nurses, physical therapists and other staff within the care team with patients in an effort to intervene and keep them out of the hospital. The program provides easy-to-use technology and training, so that patients can measure, record and transfer vital signs and other important medical information to nurses and their care team. The nurses and care team are proactive in monitoring the patients to detect changes through the telehealth monitoring services.

This kind of specialized knowledge helps the entire team, including the patient, to better manage their diagnosis and take control of their own health. Telehealth allows the patients to maintain their independence, learn about their diagnosis, and take control of their own health. Telehealth has been proven to improve patient outcomes.

According to Faye Bryant, BSN, RN, C “You can see a reduction in re-hospitalizations up to forty percent in some instances, it’s proven it works”. Coastal Home Health & Hospice is confident that this telehealth program will enhance the care provided, help with the challenges that our rural communities face when it comes to healthcare for both healthcare workers and our patients. For more information about our Telehealth program visit CoastalHHH.org

Written by:
Anna Marie Curtis, Marketing Manager