Virtual Physical Therapy
It's undeniable we live in an ever increasingly virtual world. No where is that more evident than in the fact that physical therapy can be done remotely.
Enter Reflexion Health, a virtual rehabilitation therapy company dedicated to bringing patients technology that helps them recover at home. The company's flagship product, VERA™, is an FDA-cleared Virtual Exercise Rehabilitation Assistant that is able to support and remotely monitor physical therapy exercises in real-time. VERA brings the guidance of a physical therapist into the home to coach, motivate and assess adherence to prescribed physical therapy recovery exercises. Pretty cool right?
In a new study published in the Journal of Knee Surgery, led by Cleveland Clinic researchers, a number of clinical and operational benefits were found to be associated with using VERA. The study evaluated the use of VERA for 157 patients who underwent knee surgery. Measures evaluated included: patient compliance and adherence to the VERA program; time spent performing physical therapy exercises with VERA; overall usability of the platform; and clinical outcome scores based on traditional knee replacement recovery regimens.
Across the entire study population, adherence to all prescribed therapy was measured at nearly 80 percent, a rate superior to published self-reported adherence rates from patient surveys of between 35 and 70 percent in traditional physical therapy settings. Patients in the study spent an average of 27 minutes per day exercising over the course of an average 30 days. The combination of patient educational materials and exercise performance information from the VERA platform, combined with occasional 15-minute telemedicine visits (averaging of 2.5 per patient) enabled patients and clinicians to have fewer than four in-person visits (average of 3.4) during the entire recovery period. This resulted in associated savings in time, steps, and money for patients, providers, and payers.
By the end of the study, patient scores for pain and knee function improved significantly, with increased overall patient satisfaction attributed to the remote access, the favorable usability score and remote monitoring features of the virtual therapy regimen.
The authors pointed out that these positive results are "lacking" in other, non-interactive telerehab applications. The researchers state: "[VERA] encouraged clinician-patient interaction beyond the hospital setting and offered the advantage of cost savings, convenience, at-home monitoring, and coordination of care, all of which are geared to improve adherence and overall patient satisfaction."
"The study supports our unique approach to home-based virtual physical therapy and the VERA system. By using VERA, patients demonstrate superior adherence to their treatment regimen, fewer in-person visits to the hospital or clinic, and arguably most importantly, they express greater enthusiasm for and engagement in their recovery program," said Joseph Smith, M.D., Ph.D., chief executive officer, Reflexion Health. "By giving patients and providers back time, steps and money, rehabilitation from surgery becomes a far more pleasant, cost-effective and efficient experience for everyone involved."
Reflexion Health is the industry leader in providing a virtual physical therapy experience that helps patients and clinicians efficiently manage physical therapy from pre-habilitation through to post-acute care. VERA is currently in use at academic medical centers, ambulatory surgical centers, home health organizations, senior living communities, and individual patient homes across the U.S.
For more information on VERA or to sign up for a virtual demo, visit www.reflexionhealth.com.