Ochsner Health, Bold Partner to Use Digital Health to Decrease Falls

The partnership highlights the importance of leveraging digital health to improve patient outcomes.

A partnership between Ochsner Health and Bold aims to leverage digital health to reduce falls and improve health outcomes in older adults.

The platform is one of five interventions in Ochsner’s Connected Stability pilot fall prevention and monitoring programs to help Medicare Advantage members at the highest risk for falls.

Bold’s evidence-based fitness programs keep older adults active to prevent such falls. In fact, findings of a clinical study conducted by Bold demonstrated up to a 60% reduction in annualized fall rate in members enrolled in the program. The digital health program features strength, balance, and mobility exercises, along with education and community support.

According to the CDC, one in three adults over the age of 65 years old fall each year. And the falls come with a high cost — nearly $50 billion annually on non-fatal fall injuries and $754 million is spent on fatal falls. In 2018 alone, Medicare paid $29 billion for treatment and care of non-fatal falls.

“Falls is one of the leading problems facing healthcare today in terms of both cost and mortality,” Richard Milani, M.D., medical director for iO and chief clinical transformation officer for Ochsner Health, said in a press release. “Bold’s balance training program was a natural fit as one of multiple interventions in our comprehensive fall prevention and monitoring program as we work to prevent future falls.”

To use Bold, members complete an online assessment about their current health and fitness levels. With the data, the platform designs a personalized program specific to the member’s abilities. The program offers options that are easy to follow and accessible at home. While participating in the program, members can have supportive and motivational check-ins. What’s more, they can join virtual live classes and other community events to encourage social connections.

The partnership is not the first time Ochsner Health used health tech and digital platforms to help its patients.

Through Connected Maternity Online Monitoring, expecting mothers can manage their pregnancy at home without scheduling an appointment. Patients can digitally send weights and blood pressure readings to their medical team.

Ochsner Health was also among the first hospitals to integrate with Apple HealthKit via Epic. And a few years ago, the hospital launched the O Bar, an in-person center for learning about health and wellness apps. The hospital recommends hundreds of apps that range from nutrition tracking, to fitness, to managing chronic conditions. A majority of the apps help patients track their vital signs and integrate with Apple HealthKit.

The new partnership between Ochsner Health and Bold firmly reiterates digital health platforms can improve patient outcomes from outside the traditional four walls of care.