In recent years, mobile health (mHealth) apps have promised improved monitoring of health conditions to improve clinical outcomes. While existing sensors and devices collect relevant information from patients, such information is rarely shared with healthcare providers, potentially preventing timely interventions. Existing patient portals are typically static in nature— they lack remote and real-time capabilities for monitoring symptoms, medication use, activity levels and community mobility. These is vital information for understanding how patients recover from surgical procedures— this is particularly true for older adults who are highly vulnerable to poor recovery.
The objectives of this application are to: 1) implement our existing Real-Time and Online Assessment and Mobility Monitor (ROAMM) smartwatch app platform into the electronic health record (EHR) to form the ROAMM-EHR platform and 2) test its feasibility in a pilot randomized clinical trial (RCT) in older patients (n= 50, >60 yrs) discharged after orthopedic surgery in preparation for a definitive trial. The central hypothesis is that integrating patient generated health data with the EHR system will improve symptom management and carry over into better outcomes, e.g. mobility function, lower pain, and better quality of life indices compared to the standard of care. The rationale is that ecological momentary assessment of patient symptoms can promote earlier and more informed micro-interventions such as changing medications, enhancing rehabilitation or performing more check-ins, resulting in improved patient outcomes. The pilot RCT will accomplish operational aims to refine and establish several elements for the future trial, including: the onboarding and behavioral approaches for using ROAMM-EHR, randomization scheme, study outcomes, quality assurance and standardization, recruitment and retention rates, data analytic strategies, technical implementation, and patient and staff usability/acceptability.
The approach is innovative, because study will represent the first effort to not only build and implement but also to formally test a real-time post-surgical symptom surveillance platform by integrating patient generated health data from wearable devices with the EHR system. The proposed research is significant since timely post-surgical recovery will prevent both long- and short-term poor outcomes in older adults.
The expected outcomes are 1) a new smart watch enabled symptom surveillance platform that will facilitate post-surgical care management and 2) the necessary knowledge for planning a definitive trial to reduce the major gap of evidence-based medicine for mHealth interventions. At its completion, the implementation and rigorous evaluation of ROAMM-EHR will not only test a transformative clinical tool, it will serve as a foundation for others in both public and private sectors who strive to capitalize on the promise of mHealth apps in healthcare.