Category

VIRTUES

A digital health solution every heart patient needs

CANet is making a difference, helping to save cardiac patients’ lives while encouraging more organizations to join the movement of patient-driven healthcare. With support across Canada, CANet has developed the VIRTUES digital health platform. A platform designed to provide patients with the most relevant medical information, facilitate access to effective care options and connect them with physicians who understand their medical and personal care requirements. “Our VIRTUES digital health platform utilizes state-of-the-art biosensor-driven diagnostics and health informatics—augmented with advanced analytics and wireless connectivity—to provide cardiac patients access to on-demand virtual care,” says Dr. Anthony Tang, CEO and scientific director, CANet. VIRTUES is a digital health companion for cardiac patients, always there to answer their questions, support them, and offer the best treatment options and access to relevant caregivers. The platform’s database consists of comprehensive health data, input by patients from multiple sources; analyzed and interpreted for patients and their caregivers. Patients can access the platform from the comfort of their homes for guideline-recommended treatment options and personalized support resources at any time. Healthcare providers of choice can also access patients’ information, no matter their location. VIRTUES can integrate with any device, including those implanted in the heart, to constantly monitor...
CANet — Healthcare Tech Outlook

Multidisciplinary Healthcare Network for Enhanced Cardiac Treatment

The concept of patient-centred care still seems to be a pipe dream for many patients. The COVID-19 pandemic has made it evident that the focus of healthcare often, though unintentional, drifts toward the disease rather than the patient. Despite the many medical innovations that have broadened the value-based care options for almost every disease, patients still have trouble accessing relevant care. Whether it is due to scarcity of medical information, distance from advanced healthcare centers, or high care costs, patients often do not get the right care to effectively treat their diseases. Bridging the gap between patients and advanced care options requires patient-aligned healthcare networks that can seamlessly connect patients with timely and cost-effective medical care. Fulfilling this role for cardiac patients across Canada is the patient-driven, non-profit association, CANet. The company brings together healthcare professionals, patients, academia, government, and not-for-profit organizations to undertake ground-breaking cardiac research and develop powerful digital health tools to improve the care journey of patients. By putting the right tools in the hands of patients at the right time, CANet enables them to manage their complex health conditions. Federally funded in part by Canada’s flagship science and technology program, Networks of Centres of Excellence, CANet...
CANet study identifies gaps in nation's efforts to reduce risk of sudden cardiac death in heart attack survivors

CANet study identifies gaps in the nation’s efforts to reduce the risk of sudden cardiac death in heart attack survivors

Canada must do better in its efforts to reduce the risk of sudden cardiac death (SCD) after heart attacks. CANet investigators have found that one in three heart attack survivors in Canada fail to adhere to the recommended medical guideline of getting a medical check-up three to six months after their attack. Heart attacks often weaken the cardiac muscle and reduce its ability to pump blood. Weak cardiac muscles increase the risk of SCD for heart attack survivors. Rechecking the heart’s pumping function, usually with an ultrasound or ‘echo’, helps monitor the condition of cardiac muscles. In cases where they have weakened further, doctors will often recommend additional drug therapy or implanted defibrillators. The CANet study found that one in three patients with reduced cardiac muscle function after a heart attack did not have their medical checkups within six months. In patients who did, reduced cardiac muscle function persisted in over a third of them. Within this group, only a quarter of those who met the criteria of getting an implanted defibrillator were referred to a specialist to get one installed. “We wanted to find out how many patients get a medical check-up at the recommended time and whether they...
VIRTUES - CANet Digital Health

Leading the way in digital health

Dr. Anthony Tang envisions a not-so-distant future where sensors, voice recognition, cloud-computing and data analytics are a routine part of our health care experience. “The grand vision is that we can make a diagnosis, follow a patient’s progress and allow management to occur wherever they are,” said Tang. “This is about empowering patients in their own health care.” As the Scientific Director and CEO of the Cardiac Arrhythmia Network of Canada (CANet) housed at Western University, Tang is focused on innovative solutions to help patients manage complex medical conditions. Collaborating with investigators across the country, CANet is leading the expansion, testing and clinical integration of a digital health platform called VIRTUES (Virtual Integrated Reliable Transformative User-Driven E-health System). VIRTUES delivers efficient, effective and accessible health care, on-demand and tailored to the specific needs of each patient. It provides patients with a patient-owned, cloud-based solution that integrates symptoms, remote monitoring data, and historic health data. VIRTUES outputs the integrated data into personalized recommendations for the management of complex conditions. The platform is a centralized and highly versatile digital health solution which can accommodate a variety of complex conditions and patient populations. Importantly, VIRTUES is not a telehealth tool or app; it is a disruptive innovation...

Doctors repurposing medical devices and apps for COVID-19

Health care workers around the world have risen to the challenges of the COVID-19 pandemic with creative solutions, from 3D-printing face shields, ventilator parts and nasopharyngeal swabs, to repurposing home breathing machines as makeshift ventilators. Physicians and researchers in Canada are adapting health technologies to triage and monitor patients with COVID-19, too. When the pandemic hit, Dr. Anthony Tang of the Cardiac Arrhythmia Network of Canada was working on an e-health platform for patients with arrhythmias, including those with implantable cardiac devices. Patients with these devices require regular follow-up, and the platform, called VIRTUES, allows them to monitor how their device is functioning and other health information. With the pandemic delaying a randomized controlled trial of the platform, Tang says he couldn’t “waste time doing nothing.” So, he and his colleagues adapted the technology to monitor patients with COVID-19 who are isolating at home. Patients can use an app to log their symptoms, including oxygen saturation and pulse rate, and communicate with their care team to avoid unnecessary visits to emergency departments and clinics. Meanwhile, clinicians can review trends in their patients’ recoveries to help identify those that may require hospitalization. London Health Sciences Centre in Ontario launched a pilot...

CANet Partners with Clearbridge Mobile to Launch COVID-19 Healthcare Web App

TORONTO, Nov. 3, 2020 /CNW/ – Clearbridge Mobile is proud to have played a vital role in assisting the Cardiac Arrhythmia Network of Canada (CANet) launch, VIRTUES, an online web-based application developed to reduce emergency department visits and improve COVID-19 patient-driven care. With many of Canada’s telehealth solutions under tremendous strain due to the pandemic, the need for a digital solution was inevitable and presented a fantastic opportunity for both organizations to partner and collectively support Canadian citizens and frontline healthcare professionals. With a proven track record of meeting aggressive timelines, previous experience working with enterprises in the healthcare sector across Canada and the United States, and industry-specific expertise in mobile and web app development, partnering with Clearbridge Mobile was an obvious choice for this project. “As a made-in-Canada solution, partnering with a local North American vendor was extremely important to us,” says CANet CEO and Scientific Director Dr. Anthony Tang. “This ensured we would have unrestricted access to their team of experts whenever needed, and allowed for open and transparent communication. Clearbridge Mobile was very customer-centric and dedicated to a refined process that helped us achieve success in launching this app.” The web-app launched within its four-week deadline and...

CANet provides symptom tracking for COVID-19 positive patients and integral support to healthcare professionals with the VIRTUES virtual patient care platform

Patients are now being enrolled in the COVID-19 Virtual Care at Home study from the Urgent COVID-19 Care Clinic at London Health Sciences Centre (LHSC) in London, Ontario. This research study through Lawson Health Research Institute, the research arm of LHSC and St. Joseph’s Health Care London, implements and evaluates a virtual, patient-centered platform created by CANet to guide COVID-19 positive patients with out-of-hospital management at home in their communities. VIRTUES COVID-19 is an online web-based application developed to reduce emergency department visits and improve COVID-19 patient care and satisfaction. With VIRTUES, patients who have tested positive for COVID-19 will have the ability to manage their care remotely with a multidisciplinary, inter-professional approach (Allied Health, Cardiology, Emergency Department, General Internal Medicine, Infectious Disease, Neurology, and Respirology). “The COVID-19 pandemic highlights the importance of global virtual healthcare,” says Dr. Anthony Tang, CEO and Scientific Director, CANet. “Our goal is to deliver a model of virtual care, supported by technology solutions. Solutions that will monitor the patients at home, thereby improving access to care, improve quality of care, and reduce the stress of patients infected by COVID-19.” As the COVID-19 pandemic progressed, CANet took decisive action to adapt the VIRTUES digital health...

Evaluating virtual symptom tracking for COVID-19 positive patients, new study – Virtual patient care platform developed by CANet launches to provide vital support

Media Release For Immediate Release September 9, 2020   LONDON, ONTARIO– A research study from the Cardiac Arrhythmia Network of Canada (CANet) and Lawson Health Research Institute is testing the use of a new online patient care platform designed to help track symptoms for COVID-19 positive patients. Patients are now being enrolled in the study from the Urgent COVID-19 Care Clinic at London Health Sciences Centre. This virtual clinic helps identify, triage, monitor and manage potential complications for people recovering from COVID-19 at home. Patients can self-monitor their health with ongoing access to virtual physician support. The COVID-19 Virtual Care at Home research study is testing the use of VIRTUES (Virtual Integrated Reliable Transformative User-Driven E-health System), a virtual, patient-centred platform created by CANet to help guide COVID-19 positive patients in managing their illness. They will have remote access to a team of health care providers including those specialized in the fields of cardiology, emergency medicine, internal medicine, infectious disease, neurology and respirology. “Using VIRTUES, the care team can monitor a range of symptoms remotely that tells us a lot about how the patient is doing. In addition to tracking their temperature, we are using a home-based pulse oximeter to measure pulse rate and oxygen saturation,” says project co-lead Dr. Marko Mrkobrada, LHSC physician and Lawson...

Cardiac Arrhythmia Network of Canada (CANet) funded study provides virtual care link to Remote Patient Management for Cardiac Implantable Electronic Devices with VIRTUES

Halifax, NS, May 11, 2020 – Remote Patient Management for Cardiac Implantable Electronic Devices (RPM-CIED), a national randomized controlled study, consisting of over two-thousand patients in 12 sites across Canada, has launched in Calgary, AB, Halifax, NS, Kitchener, ON, and Quebec City, QC. This program focuses on patient care with remote management of implantable cardiac defibrillators (ICD) and pacemakers and the efficiency, effectiveness, and safety of CANet’s VIRTUES care platform. VIRTUES will facilitate the remote-only environment of this study. Approximately 120,000 Canadian patients live with either a pacemaker or ICD. These patients are required to visit a cardiac device clinic at least once a year. The unmet need for patients with ICD’s and pacemakers to improve follow up methods outside of a clinical environment was recognized before the COVID-19 pandemic hit. “In our pilot work, we found that a remote-only approach was safe and feasible. We also found that 91% of patients desire communication from their clinic regarding their device,” says Dr. Ratika Parkash, CANet Network Investigator, Electrophysiologist at Halifax’s QEII Health Sciences Centre, and Professor at Dalhousie University. “This is not currently happening in the majority of clinics in Canada, “she adds. Although remote monitoring for CIEDs has been...

London, Ontario company plays a big role in the design of CANet’s VIRTUES Clinical Platform

“As product designers, we have to fall in love with the problem instead of the solution,” says Jonathan Kochis, head of Research and Design at the London, Ontario based firm Res.im. “Focus on the solution, and you end up with a narrow view, possibly missing something crucial.” Res.im has partnered with CANet to design front-end elements of the VIRTUES Clinical Platform – CANet’s user-driven clinical application that will transform how patients and clinicians manage arrhythmia. VIRTUES will give doctors and patients the most up-to-date medical records at a moment’s notice. It will empower patients and caregivers to be active partners in the management of their health. Kochis highlights the growing demand by consumers to have everything that they might need at their fingertips, accessible via phone. Healthcare organizations must move away from traditional ideas of healthcare access, and meet these expectations. “VIRTUES is meeting that consumer demand,” Kochis says. “It is smart and necessary.” CANet has also partnered with multiple companies across Canada to leverage world-class expertise in developing cutting-edge healthcare which also helps foster economic growth. These collaborations will help CANet come closer to its strategic goal of significantly improving the efficiency, effectiveness, and accessibility of arrhythmia care delivery...
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