One thing that we can be sure of is that “Everything changes”. Nothing has been truer than this in today’s treatment environment. Whether as a result of changes in science, patient needs, medicine, or health and safety requirements, treatment for individuals with mental illness continues to evolve. Remaining flexible and adaptive has allowed Rose Hill to further its mission in this ever-changing atmosphere.
Keeping abreast of new technology and best practices is a small part of Rose Hill’s process improvement efforts. Continuous improvement is built into Rose Hill’s daily activities and keeps us on a path that is consistent with enhanced resident outcomes and higher quality of life post discharge. Using evidence-based outcome measures, Rose Hill tracks data to help maintain the excellent care for which we are known. Below is one way that this information has been used to improve resident care and create lasting recovery for those we serve.
TeleHealth is a term coined by the American Psychiatric Association to describe the use of electronic information and telecommunications technologies to support long-distance clinical health care. Used extensively in rural areas, telehealth allows people who are physically unable to get to a healthcare setting to access professionals, and can incorporate videoconferencing, the internet, streaming media, and wireless communications. It has also been very helpful in connecting individuals who need to see a specialist when one is not immediately available, such as psychiatrists.
TeleMental health has been providing behavioral health services virtually through HIPAA-compliant platforms for years, thus removing barriers to access and affordability for many. TeleMental health has been found to be effective and even preferred by many patients. In some cases, people may be more open to telehealth providers as opposed to in person professionals.
Like many organizations, Rose Hill Center began implementing remote services during the recent COVID “stay home stay safe order”. Specialty therapists were able to conduct one on one therapy with on-campus and alumni residents without leaving their home. This allowed for uninterrupted therapy and maintained the health and safety of our residents and staff. Additionally, this technology can be used to connect our residents with doctors, therapists, and case managers when they are not physically on campus.
The feedback we have received so far has been overwhelmingly positive. Pat Conn (contract therapist) stated about using tele-mental health technology “I felt very safe, and seeing people’s faces was better than in office therapy wearing a mask”. One of the first adopters of this service said “I thoroughly enjoyed the experience”.
Because Rose Hill is committed to providing the most up to date and effective treatments-telehealth services will become part of the continuous improvement process. By tracking outcomes and relevant data related to telehealth we will ensure that our residents continue to realize additional benefits and measurable improvement.