Since DispatchHealth was founded in 2013, we have always made it a point to stay up to date on the latest medical advances. We understand the significant role that innovative technologies play in our industry, and we incorporate them into our practice whenever possible with the goal of streamlining operations, supporting our partners, and providing the best possible care to the patients we treat.
One of the technologies we have adopted is in-home mobile imaging. At DispatchHealth, we have always recognized the many benefits offered by mobile imaging, and for years we have offered in-home radiography and ultrasonography services through external partners and vendors. Since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic, however, we have taken steps to integrate mobile imaging into our existing in-home treatment services. Since April 2021, we have acquired both Professional Portable X-Ray and Dynamic Mobile Imaging, making us one of the largest mobile imaging providers in the nation.
What is in-home mobile imaging?
As its name suggests, in-home mobile imaging involves performing diagnostic imaging tests in the comfort of patients’ own homes. This is not limited to just private residences—DispatchHealth can also bring mobile imaging services to assisted living facilities, nursing homes, senior housing communities, and other group settings.
Thanks to our recent acquisitions, we are now able to offer a wide array of mobile imaging tests, including:
- Bone density screenings
- Doppler tests
- Electrocardiograms (EKGs)
- Holter monitoring
- Pacemaker checks
- Peripherally inserted central catheter (PICC) line insertions
What are the benefits of in-home mobile imaging?
In-home mobile imaging offers several advantages over imaging performed in a traditional hospital or clinic setting. These benefits serve DispatchHealth’s partners and their patients.
One of the primary benefits of in-home mobile imaging is that it virtually eliminates the risks associated with patient transport. If a patient suspects that they have fractured a bone, for instance, having to travel to a brick-and-mortar office for an X-ray could potentially worsen the injury. Likewise, clinicians often order chest X-rays to diagnose pneumonia, but visiting an office could expose a patient whose immune system is already compromised to even more contagions.
Our in-home mobile imaging services also offer an added benefit for partners that operate residential facilities. Traditionally, transporting a patient off-premises for diagnostic imaging could cause a considerable amount of noise, making it difficult for other residents to get the rest they need. Bringing the imaging equipment directly to the patient’s bedside minimizes any resulting disruption.
Another benefit associated with in-home mobile imaging is a faster turnaround time on results. In some cases, when patients visit an off-premises provider for imaging, it can take hours for the results to be read and returned. However, when patients rely on DispatchHealth for mobile imaging, our technicians will send the images directly to a radiologist to be read, so the results will be processed more quickly. This, in turn, allows us to more efficiently diagnose the patient’s condition and get started on any necessary treatments as early as possible.
Being able to have diagnostic imaging completed in the comfort of one’s own home is also significantly more convenient for patients, their families, and their caregivers. Patients who live in a private residence will not need to worry about arranging transportation or finding childcare. And for patients who reside in a group setting, the team members who would be responsible for coordinating the transport will be able to devote their time and effort to caring for other residents.
In-home mobile imaging is especially convenient for individuals with conditions that make it hard for them to leave home. For example, patients with limited range of motion or cognitive impairment could find it difficult to travel to a brick-and-mortar office. Being able to receive care at home is a much more comfortable option and could in fact make it more likely that patients will follow through with getting the care they need.
Reduced hospital readmission rates
In-home mobile imaging can also help decrease hospital readmission rates. In 2012, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services began a Hospital Readmission Reduction Program that penalizes hospitals with higher-than-expected readmission levels. Under the program, hospitals have been penalized almost $2.5 billion.
By bringing imaging equipment into patients’ homes, DispatchHealth can spare them from having to return to a hospital for diagnostic testing. This provides an invaluable benefit to medical provider partners who are trying to keep their readmission rates as low as possible for funding purposes.
For more information
If you would like to know more about the in-home mobile imaging services that we are now able to offer, contact DispatchHealth today. Or, to request a visit on behalf of one of your patients or residents, click here.
* Please note: For life-threatening and time-sensitive injuries and illnesses, call 911 or go to the nearest emergency room. DispatchHealth should not be used in a life-threatening emergency and does not replace a primary care provider.
DispatchHealth relies only on authoritative sources, including medical associations, research institutions, and peer-reviewed medical studies.
Sources referenced in this article:
DispatchHealth helps reduce avoidable ER visits, a hospital admission or a skilled nursing facility stay by delivering high-acuity and cost-effective medical care to patients in their homes. DispatchHealth provides patient-centered care with an integrated delivery model and works in conjunction with health systems, payers, employers, senior living, provider groups and Emergency Medical Services. DispatchHealth’s current service lines include EMS (911 alternative), Acute Care (ER alternative), Bridge Care (readmission alternative), Advanced Care (hospital alternative), Extended Care (nursing facility alternative) and Clinic Without Walls (telehealth alternative).
Patients can also contact DispatchHealth directly via phone, app or website. DispatchHealth is partnered with most major insurance companies.