In an effort to improve care among the chronically ill, the Centers for
Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) will fund a demonstration of how
home monitoring can help spot problems and intervene early before
patients need to be hospitalized.
The project starts January 1 and will last 3 years.

American Medical Group Association, Alexandria, Va., Bend (Ore.)
Memorial Clinic
and Wenatchee (Wash.) Valley Medical Center will
initiate the demonstration using home monitoring technology from Health
Hero Network Inc.
, Mountain View, Calif. The vendor's Health Buddy
features Web-based home monitoring technologies for patients
with chronic diseases>

This is obviously a big announcement for Health Hero Network,
who's been doing a lot of lobbying in Washington DC lately. They
received a 510k on their new Health Buddy appliance this past April
(press release). Parameters on the new device include blood glucose,
NIBP, electronic weight scales, and peak flow meter. Here's the
indication for use statement from their 510k application:

Health Buddy®~ Appliance is indicated
for use in non-clinical settings to collect and transmit historical
data to healthcare professionals to help support effective management
of their patients. The Health Buddy® is an accessory device, intended
to be a communication tool to enable healthcare providers to receive
historical patient information. The product is used in conjunction with
Health Hero Network's Online Service, a communication tool to enable
health care providers to educate, motivate, and receive patient
information. Health Buddy Appliance is not intended to provide
automated treatment decisions, nor is it to be used as a substitute for
a professional healthcare judgment. All patient medical diagnosis and
treatment are to be performed under the supervision andoversight of an appropriate healthcare professional.

Oh, how slow the pace of change!