Remote Patient Monitoring for the Treatment of Hypertension

October 6, 2022

Healthcare organizations are developing remote patient monitoring (RPM) applications to aid those suffering from chronic illnesses - individuals most susceptible to receiving at-home health metrics monitoring and care management. One of these groups is those suffering from hypertension.

Hypertension also referred to as high blood pressure (BP), is a problem affecting around 116 million (47%) people across the United States, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. In 2019 high blood pressure was classified as a significant or contributory cause of death for more than 517,000 people. Its treatment costs the U.S. healthcare system an estimated $130 billion annually.

This guide will walk you through the potential of remote patient monitoring system for the treatment of hypertension. However, before diving into it, we will first explore the roadblocks physicians and patients encounter to apt blood pressure management.

Challenges In Effective Blood Pressure Management

According to the American Medical Association (AMA), the most commonly encountered obstacles to effective blood pressure management are discussed below:

One major challenge faced is masked hypertension. It is a condition that causes people to have normal blood pressure at the doctor's office but has high blood pressure at home. While Clinical inertia is when the treatment of a patient is in no way initiated or intensified by the clinical staff member when the patient's blood pressure fluctuates away from the goal set. Other hurdles limiting the apt management of a patient’s BP are:

  • The utilization of Incongruous and inaccurate methods for measuring blood pressure.
  • Inefficient use by the clinical staff of evidence-based treatment protocols.
  • Poor or insufficient participation of patients in self-management of blood pressure.

Just one-quarter of people have their blood pressure within acceptable limits and in control. The rest suffer from an illness that raises the risk of stroke or cardiovascular disease. Therefore, healthcare institutions are swiftly moving toward remote patient monitoring systems that simultaneously improve patient outcomes and cut down on costs for treatments.

Role of RPM In Managing Hypertension

Remote patient monitoring for hypertension is crucial in giving healthcare professionals the opportunity to intervene quickly and stop a manageable problem from turning into an emergency medical situation that could need hospitalization. RPM assists in eliminating the various obstacles to monitoring blood pressure, including masked hypertension, clinical inertia, etc. It also assists patients in developing an effective method of measuring that fits their specific needs. Patients with hypertension can modify their lifestyle and behaviors according to the needs of control and also record their BP readings regularly instead of waiting for a visit to an expert medical practitioner.

RPM plays a crucial part in managing hypertension for healthcare professionals and patients, allowing them to make well-informed decisions based on statistics and trends. It is possible to be alerted immediately whenever the blood pressure reading fluctuates from the ideal range for a patient. In the event of an alert, they can call the patient or their family members to determine the reason for the change and what actions should be taken to bring the blood pressure back to normal. To put it simply, remote blood pressure monitoring allows healthcare professionals to treat patients proactively and efficiently.

How to Plan Proactive Care Management with Remote Patient Monitoring?

An RPM program should be created not just to help manage health treatment but also to improve health outcomes, that is, using the system to discover why a patient's blood pressure might be elevated and take steps to correct the issue.

Primary Care Physicians can leverage the data that comes into an RPM software program to determine those instances when a patient's blood pressure increases and then discuss with the patient to discover the reason for the surge. For instance, the rise in blood pressure could be caused by stress, exercise, lack of fluids, or a diet. Through a discussion with patients, the doctor can assist them in connecting the dots between behaviors and health and stress the importance of medication adherence.

The most crucial element to ensuring the success of the remote patient monitoring program is the involvement of patients. Meaningful patient engagement means presenting facts to patients that show how lifestyle choices impact health and promoting the notion that patients have more control over their lives. If high blood pressure readings result from stress-related situations, patients may have to learn to control stress. On the flip side, a healthier eating plan is needed if the readings result from the person's diet or drinks.

As hospitals become more confident with their remote patient monitoring systems and RPM devices, they can include devices and gather more information to help improve care management. Adding a weight scale or activity tracker allows doctors to monitor a patient's weight, exercise routine, sleep quality, and heart rate. As a result, it extends the spectrum of information available to physicians about the patient's daily life, allowing greater opportunities for both the patient and the provider to determine the root cause of hypertension.

Bottom Line

This guide discussed the various challenges physicians, caregivers and patients face in apt blood pressure management, what role remote patient monitoring can play in it and how you can plan a proactive care management plan with it. TalkEHR supports next-generation digital health with its RPM service. It enables physicians to proactively manage and monitor patient conditions by using medical devices to make quick decisions and reduce the chances of emergency visits and hospital admission. If you struggle with staffing challenges, we also have dedicated care coordinators to manage the complete RPM program for you.