Millions of adults in the U.S. with chronic health conditions are rushed to the emergency room each year because of chest pain. When chest pain strikes, it is difficult for patients to know whether the pain is heart-related and caused by a medical emergency, or whether it is from something less urgent. Eighty-five percent of hospital admissions for chest pain is not heart-related. But, chest pain can signal serious issues, particularly in patients who are at high risk for cardiovascular problems. For high-risk patients—like those with hypertension, high cholesterol, diabetes or CHF—monitoring and support from a healthcare provider may be the key to detecting issues early and preventing pain, trips to the emergency room and hospitalizations. One way providers and their healthcare teams can offer this support to chronic patients is through remote health monitoring surveys.
Unless high-risk patients are monitored between visits, it is hard for providers to know if:
- Patients are struggling to manage chronic conditions
- Patients have uncontrolled pain
- Patients are experiencing symptoms that put them at risk for being hospitalized
- Health metrics (like blood pressure) are within range
- Patients are taking prescribed medications
- Intervention is required to help patients stay on track with health management
When healthcare teams use surveys to capture information from patients, they can identify and address issues that could potentially lead to pain, heart problems and trips to the hospital. Simple surveys that ask patients about symptoms related to new or worsening pain, medication use, diet, lifestyle and other health markers can give providers insights about chronic patients’ health.
Patients who are likely to experience chest pain and related problems are typically very interested in taking surveys from their providers. According to a West survey of 1,036 adults and 317 healthcare providers in the U.S., patients with hypertension (76%), CHF (91%) and high cholesterol (76%) say they are interested in participating in remote monitoring surveys, as are chronic patients with obesity (84%), diabetes (82%) and COPD (77%).
Cardiovascular health is worsening in America. In fact, research shows that more adults in the U.S. are at risk for heart attacks and strokes today than compared to a generation ago. Data from the American Heart Association shows that approximately 103 million adults in the U.S. have high blood pressure. And the CDC reports that around one in three Americans have high cholesterol. Surveys can be part of an aggressive strategy for monitoring and managing these and other chronic conditions.
For more information about using monitoring surveys to help high-risk patients avoid the hospital, download The Pain Problem: The ER Is the Wrong Place to Treat Chronic Pain.