Objectives: To conduct a cost analysis of ambient assisted living technology, which is promising for improving the ability of individuals and care providers to monitor daily activities and gain better awareness through proactive management of health and safety. Design: Three-arm cohort study. Setting: Homes of enrollees of a state-based healthcare plan for older adults. Participants: Enrollees dually eligible for Medicare and Medicaid (N = 268). Intervention: Health and safety passive remote patient monitoring (PRPM) systems were installed in enrollees’ homes (the intervention group) with monitoring and proactive intervention of a case manager when deviation from baseline subject behavior was detected. Measurements: Claims data were collected over 12 months to assess healthcare use and costs in the intervention group and to compare use and costs with those of two control groups: a concurrent group of enrollees who declined the technology and a historical cohort matched on age to the participation group. Results: Although the small sample size precluded cost differences that were statistically significant, the participant group used substantially less custodial care, emergency department (ED) services, inpatient stays, and ED costs than the two control groups. Conclusion: In this pilot study, the PRPM system was associated with apparent healthcare cost savings. Although more cost analyses are warranted, ambient assisted living technologies are a potentially valuable investment for older adult care.
- ambient assisted living
- passive remote monitoring