iRhythm Technologies has announced a virtual platform to support patients and clinicians in the wake of COVID-19 by offering home enrolment for the company’s Zio XT and Zio AT heart monitoring devices.
Since patients with heart conditions are a particularly vulnerable population for COVID-19 and should avoid unnecessary visits to a doctor’s office, the company said in a press release, they can receive and apply the device from the comfort of their homes. In addition, during this public health emergency, physicians treating COVID-19 patients can now use Zio AT mobile cardiac telemetry to monitor their heart rhythms in both inpatient and outpatient settings, freeing up hospital beds and additional resources.
iRhythm is providing Zio AT mobile cardiac telemetry solutions to monitor the near real-time heart health of severely ill COVID-19 patients, providing a multi-campus solution for Montefiore Health System and enhancing cardiac monitoring for these patients. This initiative is rolling out in a new inpatient program at three hospitals within Montefiore. The devices, which can be placed in about five minutes per patient, have no loose wires or batteries and require no maintenance, allowing healthcare workers to safely monitor a patient’s heart rhythm while also limiting their exposure to the virus.
“Early in the outbreak of this pandemic, we recognised a need to deploy existing technologies to provide better care to our COVID-19 patients at risk for cardiac complications who were being housed on numerous units across three campuses. These patients require both inpatient and outpatient monitoring because we still don’t know the extent to which they’re at risk for additional cardiac problems. In addition to being able to more closely monitor our patients, clinicians and nurses are in the hospital room with COVID-19 patients for up to 10 minutes, twice daily, to monitor them with a 12-lead ECG; now, we’re in the room once and for roughly five minutes, without compromising the care provided to the patient. Zio’s heart monitoring solution is making a real difference in not only our patients’ health, but also in the health of our staffers by limiting our exposure to this virus,” said Kevin J Ferrick, director of Electrocardiogram Section, Montefiore Health System (New York, USA).
COVID-19 has been associated with cardiac effects such as atrial fibrillation, ventricular arrhythmias, ventricular ectopy, and torsades de pointe (TdP). For patients with underlying heart conditions, COVID-19 can have fatal consequences. In addition, some medications may lead to QT prolongation as a side effect, causing the heart muscle to take longer than normal to recharge between beats. Monitoring of this electrical disturbance is typically performed by a 12-lead electrocardiogram (ECG), exposing nurses and ECG technicians to multiple points of contact with COVID-19 patients each day, or by using high-demand telemetry beds.
“COVID-19 has demonstrated clinicians’ clear need for help, both on the frontlines and in remotely caring for patients from the safety of their own homes. iRhythm is focusing 100% on helping clinicians care for patients during this pandemic by providing the Zio platform to patients that need monitoring both at home and in hospitals,” said Judith C Lenane, executive vice president and chief clinical officer of iRhythm. “Remote heart monitoring and care helps to keep both patients and clinicians as safe as possible, which is more important now than ever before.”