How Tech Like Amazon’s ‘Alexa’ Is Benefiting Bayada

Bayada Home Health Care, one of the top 10 largest home health companies in the United States, recently entered into a multi-year strategic partnership with Chicago-based health care technology firm PreparedHealth. Together, the companies are aiming to keep home health clients out of the hospital and safely aging in their own homes.

This goal is shared by home health providers of all shapes, sizes and geographies. But PreparedHealth’s partnership with Moorestown, New Jersey-based Bayada actually seems to be working. It also is notable for utilizing an artificial intelligence component comparable to Apple’s Siri or Amazon’s Alexa.

This tool successfully identified 15-times more patients who required timely interventions than traditional best practices did, PreparedHealth co-founder Ashish Shah told Home Health Care News.

The solution—DINA, a digital nursing assistant—analyzes patient data from several different sources to drive timely health interventions. Essentially, DINA detects patterns in a patient’s data that suggest a certain health event is on his or her horizon, notifies the patient’s caregivers of the issue and suggests some interventions for the caregivers to stage prior to the situation worsening.

PreparedHealth’s other solution, the enTouch mobile app, is sort of “a Facebook feed of data, some of which is textual, some of which is images,” company co-founder David Coyle explained to HHCN in March. Caregivers and family members can use enTouch to engage in a patient’s health care, including posting pictures or direct messaging each other about that patient, like they would on most social networks.

To date, PreparedHealth’s enTouch and DINA solutions have been implemented at more than 30 Bayada sites in central Pennsylvania, Baltimore, Charlotte, North Carolina, and in and around Philadelphia, Shah said. And the results have been very encouraging to Bayada.

Siri for home health?

Since implementing PreparedHealth’s enTouch solution, Bayada has increased the speed and efficiency with which it can identify patients who need timely interventions, Shah explained. This, he said, has resulted in plenty of avoided hospitalizations and re-hospitalizations among Bayada patients.

Bayada has also benefitted directly from DINA, which is integrated into the enTouch solution.

DINA identifies patients who receive Bayada’s home health, hospice, skilled nursing and private duty home care services that may have fallen through the cracks and require timely interventions. PreparedHealth likens DINA to some other well-known, intelligent personal assistants created by Google, Amazon and Apple.

“DINA is not unlike Siri, Amazon Alexa or OK Google,” Shah explained. “Her job is essentially to make sure that nothing really falls through the cracks.”

Caregivers do not ask questions to DINA directly, like they would with Siri or Alexa; instead, DINA interjects and alerts a caregiver whenever she detects a problem. Bayada caregivers currently utilize DINA in several different care settings.

“We’re reviewing a lot of data that is being collected by registered nurses or physical therapists, social workers, people who have a relationship with the patient,” Bayada Chief Operating Officer David Baiada explained to HHCN. “We’ve trained DINA with a number of predicitve models to stage interventions based on the information that we have about a particular patient.”

More than 3,500 patient cases have been analyzed by DINA In the past few months, Shah said. DINA successfully identified 15-times more patients who needed timely interventions, compared to conventional best practices.

“She rallies the troops,” Shah explained. “[DINA] raises awareness that a certain issue is starting to bubble up, and she’ll call attention to resources to help.”

Written by Mary Kate Nelson