Colonial Park Care Center in Harrisburg, PA, uses the InTouch Telehealth Network to bring the expertise of physicians into its skilled nursing facility, helping to control costs and prevent avoidable hospital readmissions.

For its work in telehealth, the center won the Transitions Gold Award in the McKnight’s Excellence in Technology Awards, now in its fourth year. The competition was sponsored by TheWorxHub by Dude Solutions.
Colonial Park administrators say telehealth technology has improved the relationship between residents and their doctors. The facility also makes sure a nurse is present during telehealth sessions, in order to ensure accurate communication and follow-up between the resident and physician. 
Since its inception, Colonial Park’s telehealth system has brought about a 6% decrease in hospital readmissions, and saved the facility $250,000 over one year.

“Our past two years experience with [InTouch Telehealth Network] has shown us that patients, family and staff have become much more receptive and positive of this approach to providing care,” said administrator Brett Shibley.
The Silver Transitions Award went to Brittany Manor, a skilled nursing facility in Midland, MI. Brittany Manor’s administrators identified weaknesses in its outdated paper-based systems. The facility received a full-fledged tech overhaul with new wiring, desktop computers, mobile workstations, tablets and a streamlined EMR. Brittany Manor’s 30-day return to hospital rate has dropped from 33.3% to 13.3%, which administrators say is partly due to their beefed up alert system.
Roland Park Place earned the Bronze award for implementing an integrated technology strategy, including a new wireless network, improved EHR system and automated resident check in for independent residents. The facility reports the upgrades have improved resident quality of life by increasing connectivity and privacy.
Certificates of Merit were won by Artman, a Liberty Lutheran home in Ambler, PA, for its use of telemedicine technology; Alaris Health of New Jersey for its StayConnected! smartphone app and Cherry Creek Nursing and Rehabilitation Center in Aurora, CO, for its pilot of the Museum Memories Matter program, a music-based intervention for patients with dementia.

Award winners in the categories of Dignity, High Tech/High Touch, Innovator and Quality will be announced through the week.