The University of Pittsburgh Medical Center created a remote monitoring program recently to help measure blood pressure in new moms after they leave the hospital and it’s increasing the number mommy’s who keep their post-partum appointments–90% compared to the national average of just 60%. Women were discharged from the hospital with an automatic blood pressure pump and then a computerized system within the patient’s electronic health record prompted them to take their own BP and heart rate readings. In 2020, UPMC plans expand the program to all 15 of its hospitals.
The trend is a good for moms but also the broader health system and any psych therapy professionals given that more of these programs are focused on depression screening and management. Some insurers and employers are encouraging depression screening during the 2nd trimester as a way to head off potential pre-term labor, while others are creating flat fees to OBGYNs for all aspects of prenatal care, labor, delivery and post-partum management.