Beebe Healthcare is the first in the state offering a Hospital at Home program.
The Hospital at Home program is only for patients who meet certain criteria, essentially non-ICU care patients, and it allows them to be treated in the comfort of their own home instead of a traditional in-patient hospital care.
Transportation back home from the hospital, delivery and set up of any necessary equipment including IV medications, a tablet allowing patients to see and talk to their doctor or nurse are provided.
Care also includes daily visits from doctors or nurse practitioners in person or virtually, two daily visits by a registered nurse, support from social workers and physical therapists, and assistance in scheduling follow up appointments.
Dr. Bill Chasanov is the vice president of population health at Beebe Healthcare. He says so far the month-old program has only done in-person visits.
"So while virtual and telemedicine visits are a piece to this, right now we are really focusing on going into the patient's home to make sure that we have the opportunity to educate and help them the best that we can," Chasanov said. "Now if we need to switch to a virtual visit, we have that option and that opportunity, but we have not done that at this point."
Patients are also provided with a scale, pulse oximeter, blood pressure monitor, and thermometer.
Hospital officials started the program as a result of the pandemic, and found it a better way to treat patients when hospitals are extremely busy.
Chasanov says one benefit is not worrying about visiting hours.
"How amazing is it to know that you or your family or loved ones will be able to be taken care of within their home as opposed to being in the hospital where the family has to figure out how to get there sometimes to visit, when they can see them, things like that," he said
Chasanov notes a dedicated medical team is used for the program with a few patients enrolled every day.
He adds it has helped free up hospital beds during the nearly one month it’s been up and running, and the hospital has received positive reviews from the patients in the Hospital at Home program.