Banner Health cuts care costs 27% through telehealth program

Initial results from a pilot telehealth program for patients with chronic conditions at Phoenix-based Banner Health indicate significant reductions in cost of care and hospitalizations.

Banner Health partnered with healthcare solutions provider Royal Philips for its Intensive Ambulatory Care pilot program, which is part of Banner Health's larger telehelath program. IAC focuses on improving patient outcomes, care team efficiency and reducing readmissions for the most complex and high-cost patients.

Results from the pilot project indicate a 45 percent reduction in hospitalizations. Acute short term hospital stays fell from 7.7 hospitalizations per 100 patients per month to 4.9. Long-term care stays fell from 3.9 hospitalizations per 100 patients per month to 1.4. This reduction in hospitalization led to a 27 percent reduction in total care costs, which was also affected by a reduced need for professional service and outpatient costs.

"The results of our at-home telehealth pilot with Philips have been dramatic and are indicative of the exponential success such a program could have by engaging patients in their own care and building a strong support system around them," said Hargobind Khurana, MD, senior medical director of health management at Banner. "As we continue to expand this program, we anticipate seeing further proof that telehealth programs can address readmissions rates, reduce costs, and improve the health and quality of life for patients with multiple chronic diseases."

More articles on telemedicine:

UnitedHealthcare to expand telemedicine coverage for 20 million patients
Teladoc to file for IPO: 5 things to know
Anthem expands telemedicine offerings in Connecticut

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