Yesterday we enrolled the first patient in our newest pilot project at Brigham & Women's Hospital (part of Partners Healthcare) in Boston. This pilot is for patients with hypertrophic cardiomyopathy (HCM), a condition which results in a thickened heart muscle wall. When one hears of young athletes collapsing on the basketball court or football field, it often is the result of HCM.
For patients newly diagnosed with HCM (usually via echocardiogram screening, now commonly done for student athletes), getting them to the proper levels of medication as quickly as possible is very important. Historically that has meant prescribing certain dosages of medications, then having the patient come back into the clinician's office for tests, increasing the dosage, having them come back for more tests, etc., until the optimal dosage has been achieved. Logistically, this can take some time, and results in the substantial cost (and time) of numerous visits to the clinic.
Using iGetBetter, the clinician can monitor the patient's vital signs remotely, including blood pressure and physical activity levels (we are using a Bluetooth-enabled BP cuff as well as an activity tracker connected to the patients mobile devices), and increase the level of medications quickly, without the delays required by scheduling office visits, etc., getting the patient to the proper dosages much more quickly and safely.
This pilot is using our iGetBetter system in a way we had not originally imagined when designing it, and we are delighted and excited by the potential of this pilot to broaden how we can help improve patient outcomes, improve population health and in the process reduce costs.
Thanks to Dr. Calum MacRae, the Chief of Cardiology at Brigham & Women's Hospital, for his creativity and vision in imagining how the iGetBetter system could be used for the HCM patient population. Also thanks to Drs. Neal Lakdawala and Carolyn Yung Ho of the Cardiology department for their support and participation.
Win Burke, President and CEO