SOURCE: Pharos Innovations

Pharos Innovations

September 16, 2010 09:32 ET

South Jersey Healthcare Expands Post Discharge Care Management Program to Include COPD Management for Its Rural Population

NORTHFIELD, IL--(Marketwire - September 16, 2010) - 50 million Americans live in rural areas, and accessing healthcare when they need it can be challenging and costly. Complicating matters is that individuals living in these areas have a higher prevalence of chronic health conditions, such as heart failure and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD).

To combat this challenge, Pharos Innovations, the provider of unique IVR and Web-based remote patient monitoring/behavior change technology, has partnered with South Jersey Healthcare (SJH)-a leading regional healthcare provider in southern New Jersey that serves a largely rural and hard to reach population -- to improve access to care and care quality for patients with heart failure. Pharos and SJH today announced that, due to the program's success, they are expanding the Tel-Assurance program to include the monitoring and management of patients with COPD.

Through the current heart failure program, SJH reduced hospital admissions by 60% for enrolled patients, reduced healthcare costs for the enrolled population by $1,203 per patient and achieved an 83% patient satisfaction rate -- proving that a technology-leveraged chronic care management program can penetrate diverse geographies, including low socioeconomic groups, to improve access to care and quality of life and reduce healthcare costs.

"We have seen first-hand the impact that regular monitoring and management through Tel-Assurance can have on patients with heart failure, especially those who live in rural areas, and on improving outcomes and organizational performance," said Dr. Steve Linn, Chief Medical Officer, South Jersey Healthcare. "We are expanding our partnership to afford our patients with COPD the same benefits and see an even greater reduction in avoidable hospital readmissions.

"One of the great values of Tel-Assurance is that it consistently and sustainably reduces average length of stays and readmissions; improves care access and quality and improves patient and care manager satisfaction for a multitude of chronic and costly conditions across various geographies and demographics," said Randall E. Williams, CEO, Pharos Innovations. "We designed Tel-Assurance to reach even the most challenging populations and easily scale."

About South Jersey Healthcare
SJH is a nonprofit, integrated health care system, providing access to a continuum of health services. SJH provides hospital services, numerous community health clinics, home health services, and specialty services, which serve the medical and health care needs of Southern New Jersey residents.

About Pharos Innovations
Pharos Innovations is actively involved in transforming the U.S. healthcare delivery system. Pharos offers IVR and Web-based behavior change services and tools that enable payers and providers to cost-effectively and efficiently manage their chronic care population.

Pharos' main offering, Tel-Assurance, engages, motivates and drives improved self-care. Through Tel-Assurance, participants self-report their health status daily through the phone or Web. This unique approach actively engages individuals with chronic conditions in their healthcare and provides care managers/nurses with real-time information to intervene before symptoms escalate. Tel-Assurance has been proven an effective way to reduce avoidable, all-cause hospital admissions and readmissions and reduce overall healthcare costs among diverse populations.

The Pharos' solution is strongly validated to show measured clinical improvement and financial impact, is the recipient of the prestigious American Heart Association National Outcomes award and was selected for the first ever National Institutes of Health (NIH) sponsored evaluation of remote monitoring interventions. For more information visit www.pharosinnovations.com or join in on the discussion at our blog, www.thecollaborativeforum.com.

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