Sunday, 14 September 2014

Senior Video Conferencing in Home Healthcare

For today's senior citizens, technology is always changing, especially with communications. The phone and snail mail are still functional, but vastly different. The internet is the foundation for growth of the "Information Age". Modification of computer hardware and software adds video web conferencing to their communication options.

Now that healthcare is a major force in America, "Internet video conferencing is quickly becoming essential in promoting Senior independence at home", says Greg Hartwell, co-founder and CEO of Homecare California. This technology is common in business and social settings, but less so for Seniors. As a growing communications option, internet video conferencing promotes instant access, making evaluations and medical management convenient.

The American Association of Retired Persons defines four challenges to Senior well-being. These challenges consist of diminishing memory, diminishing mobility, diminishing skills, and increasing isolation. These video visits provide non-medical therapies for Senior well being hardships.

Homecare California (HCC)

Only 6 years old, HCC is a major provider of Senior home healthcare in Northern California. Hartwell attributes their success to fulfilling a growing need for a growing population. A common problem of home healthcare agencies is maintaining an effective patient and personnel balance. These video visits are the forerunner of medical advances, favoring Telehealth and other remote medical services.

Why Internet Video Conferencing?

These self-help systems work well for patients who live alone, have adequate memory, have some computer skills, and have family support. The implementation of internet video conferences by HCC is just the start of a growing acceptance of this technology by home healthcare agencies.

Patient benefits:

1. The self-help system for internet video conferencing is dirt simple.

2. Video communication provides good value for family and patient.

3. Subscription rates are reasonable.

4. The system allows many other uses (education, stimulation, interaction).

5. Emphasis is focused on a secure, easy, and portable configuration.

6. Both computer hardware, software, and internet access are provided.

7. Minimal training is necessary and provided.

HCC benefits:

1. The primary advantage of video visiting is to SUPPLEMENT, not replace, home visits.

2. The components are one desktop unit, embedded software, and Wi-Fi internet access, therefore minimal setup necessary.

3. These self help systems are simple and user friendly, which means no personnel required.

4. For the agencies, a reasonable investment and excellent return justify its revenue neutral status.

5. The use of internet video conferencing for unlimited e-mail and family contacts is extremely attractive to both patients and families. This makes the system a unique and powerful marketing tool.

6. These systems are usually leased or subscription based. This business model involves business process outsourcing, therefore minimal maintenance or technical support costs.

7. Outsourcing also means hardware and software are automatically updated, so there is no obsolescence issue.

8. Patient users and family undergo complimentary system training.

9. Most importantly, after 3 years of usage, the system pays for itself.

For more information on Video Visits and self-help systems, contact VVS.