Apple TVs Added to Tech Toolkit to Engage Patients

Illustration by Marta Sevilla

Published in Cardiovascular Report - Cardiovascular Report Spring 2018 and Insight - Insight May/June 2018

Early study results found patients using the Johns Hopkins Corrie app and Apple Watch for 30 days following a heart attack are less likely to be readmitted to the hospital. Now the team of researchers has added another element to its toolkit to engage patients during their transition from hospital to home: Apple TV media players.

Since its launch in 2016, Corrie has been empowering patients in their recovery from a heart attack with notifications to exercise and take medications, reminders for medical appointments and educational videos. Now patients can stream the videos using the Apple TVs in the progressive cardiac care unit and look at the content with their caregivers.  

Seth Martin, cardiologist and clinical lead on the study, says the Apple TVs are useful during the time that patients often have with family and caregivers in the hospital at their bedside while recovering from a heart attack. “Caregivers want to know what the patient should be eating, doing, and what to expect for recovery. They want expanded information on what the medical team gives,” says Martin.

The videos in Corrie are based on an ABCDE model from the Johns Hopkins Ciccarone Center for the Prevention of Heart Disease. The topics include antiplatelet therapy, blood pressure, cholesterol, cigarette-use cessation, diet, diabetes and exercise. Recent upgrades include better graphics and shorter playing times. “The animations are amazing,” says Martin. “They are visually impactful and high-yield, meaning they deliver a lot of key actionable information quickly.”

Because caregiver support can be so critical to the success of a patient, the research team is also working on a companion Corrie app for caregivers. It’s just one of many items the team is addressing based on feedback from study participants.  

“We’ve already seen such positive results, but we are just getting started,” Martin says. “I think patients are really responding to the technology. We’ll see if incorporating the Apple TVs helps even more.”