UC Davis Health Calls on the Geek Squad to Support Its New RPM Program

By Eric Wicklund

UC Davis Health is partnering with Best Buy Health on a remote patient monitoring program targeting hypertension control.

The Sacramento-based health system has signed a deal with the retail giant’s care-at-home business, Current Health, to supply RPM equipment, including digital blood pressure cuffs and scales, and a monitoring platform to selected patients. All data collected from that platform is then integrated into the health system’s EHR platform and accessed by the UC Davis Health Connected Care Center.

“Our integrated approach will provide patients with blood pressure monitoring and clinical support in real-time,” Bruce Hall, UC Davis Health’s chief clinical officer, said in a press release. “This collaboration is another example of how we are finding innovative ways to make health care more convenient, and more accessible to every patient, no matter who they are or where they live.”

The partnership is the latest in a series of collaborations for Best Buy Health and Current Health, which bring a consumer-facing retail strategy into the mix for health systems eager to improve care management at home as they more programs and services out of the hospital setting. The company is working with Baptist Health, OSF HealthCare, Geisinger, Atrium Health, Mount Sinai, NYU Langone Health, and Mass General Brigham, which signed a deal last September to support its Home Hospital program.

The UC Davis partnership takes aim at a condition that kills roughly 860,000 Americans each year, according to the American Medical Association, but can be easily monitored and even controlled through an RPM platform that gives care teams and on-demand link to patients at home.

Through that platform, the care team can track each participating patient’s blood pressure and weight throughout the day, and intervene with care recommendations or even adjust a care plan if a patient’s readings trend in the wrong direction.

The Best Buy link takes the technology and the monitoring workflow out of the hands of the care team, allowing them to focus on patient care, and puts it in the hands of Current Health staff, who visit the patient’s home 9much like the well-known Geek Squad) and set up the patient for the RPM platform, then make sure that platform is collecting and sending data properly.

In the long run, UC Davis Health can use that platform to add other care management services, such as offering group classes, one-on-one coaching and other resources. The health system also plans to expand the RPM program to serve patients living with other chronic conditions.