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Duane Gertken

iPads assist patients with heart failure

Dona Bloch, RN, CentraCare Heart & Vascular Center, shows Duane GertkenDuane Gertken wakes up each morning, weighs himself and enters the number in an iPad provided by the CentraCare Heart & Vascular Center, the first in the country to use the iPad-based application, OnTrack to Health.

The information is sent to the Heart Failure Management staff. Providers observe and monitor his status and make changes as appropriate.

“Since I’m on many medications, having the iPad helps me keep it all straight,” said Duane, 59, Richmond. “I also use it to contact the nurses if I have questions or a problem. It really cuts down on phone tag.”

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“Patients are able to self manage and feel more in control over their disease,” said Dona Bloch, RN, certified heart failure nurse. “The iPads are easy to use; you don’t need computer skills to use them.”

As patients enter their data, it is monitored in real time on a dashboard that alerts Heart Failure Management staff if patients veer from their regimens. Early recognition and intervention can prevent hospitalizations and improve overall outcomes.

Learn more about the Heart Failure Management Program.