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Home Telehealth: Facilitators, Barriers, and Impact of Nurse Support Among High-Risk Dialysis Patients

Telemedicine and e-Health. August 2013, 19(8): 573-578. doi:10.1089/tmj.2012.0201. Dayna E. Minatodani, Puihan J. Chao, and Steven J. Berman.

Objective: The value of home telehealth self-monitoring with nurse oversight has been demonstrated; however, there is a dearth of objective documentation of patients' experiences with such a model. We used a mixed methods approach to examine the value of home telehealth monitoring with remote care nurse (RCN) support from the perspective of participants in our study.

Materials and Methods: Thirty-three patients who used remote technology to self-monitor their health at home participated in a semistructured interview. The instrument was designed to help identify facilitators and barriers and to evaluate patient satisfaction with and effectiveness of home telehealth self-monitoring.

Results: Overall, patients reported high levels of satisfaction with RCN support as they received efficient feedback, were better able to identify changes in their health status, and experienced enhanced accountability, self-efficacy, and motivation to make health behavior changes. The most frequently cited barriers related to malfunctioning equipment or trouble with Internet connections, forgetfulness, and feeling poorly.

Conclusions: The results suggest that home telehealth self-monitoring with RCN support is effective in empowering patients to take a more active role in their healthcare and indirectly improve quality of life for those living with chronic illness.

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