Monitoring patients on high-risk medications is a challenge as current methods are tedious and labor-intensive.
In addition, patients may self-discontinue their medication without informing their physician.
Working with a team led by Carmela Vittorio, MD, we set out to explore the challenges associated with monitoring patients on high-risk medications and test potential solutions in the Department of Dermatology at Penn Medicine.
While observing the monitoring process, we noted the extensive manual effort required. Nurses spent hours calling patients, managing hand-written lists, and more. Managing just one lab result took an average of 20 minutes.
To validate our hypothesis that automating parts of the process could save time and increase patient adherence, we ran a fake back end pilot. We monitored six patients for several weeks, mimicking proposed automated features such as lab reminder texts to patients.
During the pilot, providers spent an average of two minutes per result as compared to 20 minutes. Further, 100% of labs were completed on time.
Based on the success of the pilot, we began developing HiRPM (high-risk patient monitoring), a comprehensive platform for lab monitoring.
At present, we are in the process of finalizing a minimum viable product to test in the Department of Dermatology.
We project that HiRPM will save 18 minutes per lab result. We anticipate that an automated lab monitoring system will allow for more efficient monitoring of all patients thus increasing patient adherence.
Further, by sending patients automated reminders and quickly identifying those overdue for labs, we anticipate that HiRPM will increase patient adherence from approximately 70% to 85%. Finally, HiRPM will promptly identify patients who self-discontinue and notify their provider.
At scale, the HiRPM platform will enable providers to thoroughly, proactively, and efficiently monitor patients taking high-risk medications.