In another example of how hospitals and health systems can broaden the scope of their virtual care programs, Intermountain Healthcare is expanding its well-established Homecare & Hospice program to include home-based primary care and some traditional services.
MobiHealthNews reports Intermountain’s new technology-supported initiative will deploy telemedicine and remote monitoring along with home care visits to expand the program from its roots in palliative care and dialysis. The initiative, which will be phased in over the next year, includes virtual urgent care through Intermountain Connect Care, a 24/7 telemedicine offering, as well as appointment-based virtual visits and remote monitoring for certain patients.
Another part of the initiative, Homespire, is an in-house company focused on helping seniors in their activities of daily life, as well as mitigating negative effects from social determinants of health.
Rajesh Shrestha, Intermountain’s COO of community-based care, told MobihealthNews that because the organization is an integrated delivery system, it has more leeway to implement a home care program than many health systems that are more dependent on fee for service. That puts Intermountain in a leadership position to prove this model of home care can be financially beneficial for a hospital as well as useful and convenient for patients, Shrestha says.