Frequently Asked Questions about Telemonitoring
Why would I want to use a Health Buddy® Telemonitoring System?
Your nurses and therapist cannot visit your home every day. When you use the Health Buddy, they can still check up on you each day. The Health Buddy provides important information about how you feel and your vital signs. Your caregivers use this information to determine whether you are getting better, or whether you need attention from your doctor. The Health Buddy is proven to reduce the number of times patients are readmitted to the hospital. It has also proven to help patients recover more quickly and maintain a better quality of life.
How do I know if I am eligible for a Health Buddy?
If your doctor feels that your condition could be better managed with daily monitoring, he or she will request that you be evaluated for a Health Buddy. A MedStar Health Visiting Nurse Association (VNA) team member will then assess your ability to read, understand and follow directions. You must also show a willingness to participate in the program. To get the Health Buddy, you also need working electricity and telephone or Internet access.
Will there be any charges or costs for using the Health Buddy?
No. While you are receiving home care with MedStar VNA, there is no cost to you for use of the Health Buddy. The Health Buddy dials a toll-free number. No charges will show up on your phone bill if you have standard phone service. You should see no noticeable increase in your electric bill. In fact, your Health Buddy uses less power than the light bulb in your refrigerator.
Can I use my telephone while it is connected to the Health Buddy?
Yes. You can use your phone or access the Internet as usual. If you happen to pick up the telephone while your Health Buddy is using the line, it will automatically stop and reschedule its call so you can use the phone.
Where is the best place to put my Health Buddy?
You can put your Health Buddy anywhere there is an electrical outlet and a working telephone jack or Internet access point. Many people put their Health Buddy in the kitchen or next to their favorite chair in the living room. Be sure that you connect the Health Buddy to an electrical outlet that cannot be turned on and off by a wall switch.
What if I accidentally press the wrong button when answering a question?
No problem. At the end of each session, you will have the option to review and change your answers.
Do I need to have a computer or know how to access the Internet?
No. All you need to do is read the screen and press one of the four buttons.
Is the Health Buddy device difficult to install?
No. MedStar VNA will install the Health Buddy for you and teach you how to use it.
For more information about MedStar VNA or to refer a patient, call 800-862-2166.