Today’s healthcare consumers are more involved than ever in their personal care. This is thanks in large part to the myriad of apps, wearables, and clinical in-home devices that help them track and record their health for both treatment and prevention purposes. These technologies are emerging from at-home patient accessories to self-manage their health to patient-physician tools providing invaluable insights and new means for communication, engagement, and education.

An increased emphasis has been placed on outcomes in the value-based health care environment, and wearables and other technologies are key drivers of this shift. The number of health care apps has doubled in recent years, topping more than 100,000 options for consumers, while wearable devices are expected to hit 245,000 devices sold by 2019, and the data that providers and health systems can glean from these technologies is exploding.

Drew Schiller, CEO of Validic™, notes readmission rates to hospitals for heart failure patients is a $5 billion concern for health care. But one of Validic’s clients, iGetBetter, recently completed a pilot with Brockton Hospital that trialed 31 heart failure patients, providing them with the necessary devices to track and adhere to their recovery process. The result? Rather than the 28 percent readmission rate that is typically expected (in this case, eight of the 31 patients), zero heart failure patients were readmitted, saving the health system an instant $215,000.

“Chronic disease management is where you can affect the largest number of patients,” Schiller says. “It’s the model we’re seeing for the future of the value-based care system.”

Patients’ adoption and utilization of these new devices and technologies, however, is only one way these digital tools are impacting care — patients today also want a better and more understanding relationship with their physician to help them get and stay healthy. And as providers engage further with the same technologies as their patients, they can foster these relationships.

Finding and using the data most useful to providers can be a challenge; but with today’s advances in digital healthcare technology, the benefits are plenty. The combination of patient engagement and digital technologies is a powerful one, and as the healthcare environment continues to evolve, the data provided by both will continue to change the face of care.

Read more by downloading our playbook that examines three components in the shift to value-based care and discusses how significantly new technologies are accelerating the quality of care and outcomes to benefit all stakeholders.

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