Medtronic and American Well Combine Telehealth Efforts

Ryan Black
OCTOBER 17, 2017
In a statement that champions “bi-directional data flow between,” 2 well-known names in the digital health space yesterday announced a collaboration to fight chronic diseases.

Medtronic Care Management Services (MCMS) and the telehealth provider American Well will now give their users easier access to the other’s services. MCMS’ remote patient monitoring software will now transmit data to doctors providing telehealth visits on the American Well platform, and information from those visits will integrate back into MCMS’s data. According to the statement, “the partnership is designed to provide greater patient access to their care team.”

The collaboration, as MCMS vice president Sheri Dodd put it, is focused on bringing together “point-in-time, just-in-time, and over-time” care for chronic patient populations. “Point-in-time would be an EHR,” she explained. “It tells you that you had a physician meeting months ago and this was what you discussed." But with telemedicine, “it’s more just-in-time. It’s capturing what’s going on with you right now.”

She said this collaboration will fill a gap by feeding remote patient monitoring back to the doctors administering the telehealth appointments. More than 70% of US healthcare expenditures go towards care of patients who have multiple chronic, co-morbid conditions, according to the statement announcing the deal.

“The key in successful telehealth interaction is to give the providers all the necessary information to make that interaction meaningful,” American Well Senior Vice President Amnon Gavish told Healthcare Analytics News. “The vital signs, any kind of information that was collected through a daily questionnaire…what we are doing through our platform, before they see the patient, all the relevant information.”

In addition to the information being provided now by MCMS, American Well doctors can receive medication history through Surescripts. He said the new collaboration fits into his company’s goal of “expanding telehealth into a broader range of workflows,” beyond just primary and urgent care. Typically, those being treated for multiple co-morbid conditions require the attention of specialists in different medical fields.

Both Dodd and Gavish said their companies plan on forge more partnerships in the future to further expand their reach and provide more comprehensive remote care. They added that their collaboration was a natural fit.

“I really appreciated the way that American Well has set up their telehealth exchange,” Dodd said, “They’re really focused on enabling all care providers. American Well is agnostic to whose doctor it is, they’re just trying to create the platform.”

“In their specific market sector, they’re the leader,” said Gavish of MCMS. “I think, the richest offering in remote patient monitoring. For us, it’s an easy choice.”

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