Dan is in his late 40s and is a small business owner, subcontracting for a major Tasmanian company.
The nature of his work is very physical and involves him using a chainsaw while suspended at height.
He had a blackout at work in 2017 and was taken to the Royal Hobart Hospital (RHH) Emergency Department. Over the course of the following two months he was taken to the RHH four times with similar symptoms and was eventually placed on a 9-10 month waiting list for the cardiology clinic.
Dan was keen to find a way to manage his condition and discovered the Corumbene Care Rural Primary Health Program (CCRPHP).
The CCRPHP is tasked by the Tasmania Primary Health Network (Primary Health Tasmania) to deliver services that improve the health outcomes for people in rural and remote areas and reduce their need to go to hospital. The program treats conditions associated with cardiovascular disease, chronic lung disease and musculoskeletal disorders remotely at no cost to the client.
In delivering these services, Corumbene works directly with clients to help them understand and manage their health and plan goals for their wellbeing, and provides access to services from home.
The delivery of these ‘at home’ services is enabled by Tunstall’s end-to-end telehealth solution. The client is provided with medical equipment in their home along with an app to download onto their phone or tablet. The client takes their own readings which are sent via Bluetooth to the app, and these readings are then instantly available to the nurse monitoring team via Tunstall’s secure Integrated Care Platform (ICP).
Utilising Tunstall’s monitoring system using a single-lead ECG enabled us to provide an innovative approach for capturing heart rhythms and detecting episodes of tachycardia in between clients’ scheduled medical consultations, resulting in better understanding of trends for both clients and their specialist.
Erika McRae; Telehealth Lead RN
Corumbene worked with Dan to develop a comprehensive care plan that focused on improving his health literacy and remotely monitoring his vital signs.
“The equipment was very easy to operate and gave me the first bit of confidence that I’d had in some time…” said Dan.
Corumbene helped Dan to seek the services of a private cardiologist (via GP referral) while continuing with the remote monitoring. A report of Dan’s monitoring data along with Corumbene’s own observations was able to be passed onto his cardiologist and GP to assist with treatment options and drug prescriptions.
“Corumbene rang and checked in on me in between medical appointments and when they received abnormal readings from the monitoring equipment. They prevented me from having to be admitted to hospital, which relieved another huge burden.”
By using Corumbene’s remote monitoring program, Dan had no further hospital admissions, ambulance trips or emergency department visits. His health care costs were reduced by approximately 60 per cent.
For Dan the program also saved time that would have been taken up by being unable to work, his physical and mental deterioration, continued Emergency Department presentations, and having to attend the cardiology clinic.
Since completing the program, Dan has become a vocal advocate saying that:
“I believe the program relieved an enormous amount of stress because I could see and understand what was happening and see improvements. I also knew that if I had any questions or worries I only needed to call.”
The Corumbene Care Rural Primary Health Program is supported by funding from Primary Health Tasmania through the Australian Government’s Primary Health Networks (PHN) Program.
*Some names and images have been changed for privacy reasons