They’ve survived congestive heart failure. The shortness of breath, the nausea, the grueling hospital stay, the complications. At the nursing facility, they fulfilled all the requirements of cardiac rehabilitation. It wasn’t easy, but eventually their energy returned and spirits lifted. They returned home seemingly healthier than before. Until the nightmare happened again. There’s nothing more dangerous or frustrating for a nursing care patient than being handed a clean bill of health, only to find themselves readmitted to acute care shortly thereafter. Sadly, this happens to 25 percent of cardiac patients.

Which is why The Allure Group, which has multiple residences throughout New York City, just launched its ground-breaking “Hearts in Motion” protocol at our Harlem Center. Obviously, such high readmission rates indicate that medical providers have been lacking the information necessary to truly understand and properly respond to patient needs. Part of the reason for this is that rehabilitation centers aren’t always provided with a patient’s complete medical records. Oftentimes, key information isn’t properly transferred from one facility to another. Another challenge lies in properly monitoring patient health following release. What if a patient isn’t following discharge instructions, or experiences a sudden change in health?

The “Hearts in Motion” program assigns a medical team – consisting of an on-site cardiologist, nurse and rehab social worker – to congestive heart failure patients, or those recovering from heart attacks, heart surgery, stent placement, or other cardiac conditions.

By leveraging telemetry monitored therapy, facilities can improve patients’ strength and abilities in a safe and informed manner, restoring physical functions and quality of life long-term. Education is also a key component to the protocol, which regularly informs patients of healthy lifestyle choices that can improve heart health.

The protocol was created by Allure’s executive and clinical leadership team consisting of Chief Medical Officer Rekha Bhandari, MD; Jeffrey Bander, MD; and Chief Operating Officer Melissa Powell. It was initially implemented across five of Allure’s nursing centers and tested by a group of 152 patients. In its test group, the remote cardiac monitoring protocol successfully reduced hospital admissions from 31 percent to just seven. Patients benefitted by enjoying better care, and medical professionals improved patient outcomes by directing time and resources where they were needed most, all while simultaneously streamlining costs.

These findings were presented at the Heart Failure Society of America (HFSA) Annual Scientific Meeting in 2015 and today the approach is recognized by the American Heart Association.

In 2017, due to the ongoing success of “Hearts in Motion,” The Allure Group experienced an extremely low 30-day readmission rate of 1.1 percent. Following Allure’s example, nursing homes and rehabilitation facilities across Brooklyn have adopted cardiac monitoring as standard care, fulfilling the company’s intention to develop practices and technologies that influence widespread industry changes.

“By looking at the situation with the intention of improving care while also setting new industry guidelines, The Allure Group was able to create faster, more efficient changes which can be adopted by other groups and easily understood by doctors and other care professionals,” said Joel Landau, Founder.

Allure thanks its dedicated team of doctors, staff and medical professions for making “Hearts in Motion” such a success, and looks forward to improving more lives at its Harlem Center location.