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The Veterans Health Administration: Taking Home Telehealth Services to Scale Nationally

2013 | Download

Since the 1990s, the Veterans Health Administration (VHA) has used information and communications technologies to provide high-quality, coordinated, and comprehensive primary and specialist care services to its veteran population. Within the VHA, the Office of Telehealth Services offers veterans a program called Care Coordination/Home Telehealth (CCHT) to provide routine noninstitutional care and targeted care management and case management services to veterans with diabetes, congestive heart failure, hypertension, post-traumatic stress disorder, and other conditions. The program uses remote monitoring devices in veterans' homes to communicate health status and to capture and transmit biometric data that are monitored remotely by care coordinators. CCHT has shown promising results: fewer bed days of care, reduced hospital admissions, and high rates of patient satisfaction. This issue brief highlights factors critical to the VHA's success—like the organization’s leadership, culture, and existing information technology infrastructure—as well as opportunities and challenges.