C Spire to Power Breakthrough Chronic Disease Telehealth Initiative by University of Mississippi Medical Center and Intel-GE Care Innovations
Wireless unit for regional telecommunications company to provide mobile broadband services
Ridgeland, Miss. (December 3, 2015) – C Spire has been selected to provide mobile broadband connectivity for a breakthrough telehealth initiative that promises to dramatically lower the cost of care and improve the health of thousands of chronically ill and underserved consumers in the southeastern U.S.
The mobile service unit of the Mississippi-based telecommunications and technology services firm will provide wireless connections to the University of Mississippi Medical Center and Intel-GE Care InnovationsTM as part of a five-year program to improve and extend the lives of individuals struggling with a variety of chronic conditions.
Care Innovations offers remote care management, data analytics and application integration services through its Health Harmony platform that helps patients become more involved in managing their health from home using consumer-friendly devices and peripherals, interactive education and videoconferencing.
“We’re excited to partner with the health care sector to combine the power and ubiquity of our high-speed mobile broadband communications network with technology solutions from Care Innovations that link UMMC specialists and patients in in their homes to deliver more connected, collaborative and cost-effective care,” said Hu Meena, president and CEO of C Spire. “This promises to make a real difference in the lives of individuals who struggle with the challenges of these chronic diseases every day.”
The program, which builds on a successful diabetes telehealth pilot in Mississippi, seeks to address a wide cross section of expensive chronic conditions, including congestive heart failure, diabetes, asthma, hypertension and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease.
“Many of the conditions these patients face are often managed ineffectively and result in preventable hospital admissions and emergency room visits,” said Sean Slovenski, CEO for Care Innovations. “We have a unique opportunity to address the serious health challenges people are facing today by better understanding human behavior and coupling those results with user-friendly technology. This transformative healthcare model has the power to deliver unmatched results for providers and patients striving to improve the quality of care and lower cost.”
The expanded collaboration aims to replicate a successful 2014 pilot program involving 100 individuals with diabetes in rural Mississippi that eliminated hospital stays, emergency room visits and saved more than $339,000 over six months.
UMMC will focus on an at-risk population that struggles to manage five of the most prevalent chronic diseases by expanding its remote care management workforce from 50 to 170 over the next year, said Kevin Cook, CEO of UMMC’s University Hospitals and Health System.
“Half the state of Mississippi suffers from two or more chronic conditions and many of these patients come through our facilities every day,” Cook said, noting UMMC expects to save $189 million in Medicaid every year just helping individuals better manage their diabetes. “After seeing the improved health and quality of life for individuals participating in this program, we’re ready to expand the benefits to other chronically ill populations.”
After expanding operations, UMMC plans to enroll 1,000 new patients a month in Mississippi and surrounding states by the end of 2016, Cook said, noting that other hospitals and health care systems, employers, health plans and physician care groups are anxious to try the remote care management approaches with their patients.
Care Innovations has been an industry leader since 2011 to extend care beyond clinics and emergency rooms through remote care management solutions. Their efforts provide more frequent connections between patients, clinicians and care givers, while lowering the cost of chronic care and improving the quality of care.
UMMC plans to use Care Innovations’ fourth generation telehealth technology solution called Health Harmony, which simplifies remote patient monitoring through intuitive and easy-to-use technology and fosters collaboration for better in-home care.
About Intel-GE Care InnovationsTM
Intel-GE Care Innovations, a joint venture between Intel Corporation and GE Healthcare, connects the care continuum to the home and makes it easier for patients, family caregivers, and professional caregivers to interact and achieve better health at home. Experts in technology and behavior change, Care Innovations identifies the best methods for health care providers and health plans to capture and integrate near real-time data from the home into care delivery. Visit www.careinnovations.com to learn more.
About University of Mississippi Medical Center
Located in Jackson, UMMC is Mississippi’s only academic medical center and encompasses six health science schools, including medicine, nursing, health related professions, dentistry, pharmacy and graduate studies. The Medical Center’s health-care enterprise includes the state’s only level one trauma center and its only children’s hospital. UMMC’s education, research and health-care missions share the objectives of improving the health of the state’s population and eliminating health disparities. For more information, visit http://www.umc.edu and umc.edu/news_and_publications.
About C Spire
C Spire is a diversified telecommunications and technology services company that provides world-class service and a superior, comprehensive suite of customer-inspired wireless communications, high-speed Internet access and a range of other telecommunications products and services to consumers and businesses. This news release and other announcements are available at www.cspire.com/news. For more information about C Spire, visit www.cspire.com or follow us on Facebook at www.facebook.com/cspire or Twitter at www.twitter.com/cspire.