How Connected Health Devices Can Help Reduce Chronic Illness

4 min read

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), over half (51.8%) of U.S. adults have at least one diagnosed chronic condition, including arthritis, asthma, diabetes, and hypertension. Connected health devices have an important role to play in helping patients with chronic illnesses improve their quality of life. In this article, we explore how these devices can help physicians and patients manage their chronic conditions and make the lifestyle changes needed to realize their wellness goals. We’ll wrap up with three real-life use cases that highlight how connected health devices are being used to empower patients and improve health outcomes.

Patient stepping on a Withings connected scale

Benefits of Connected Health Devices for Managing Chronic Illness

The nature of chronic conditions is that they can develop gradually over time. This is problematic because the deterioration can go undetected. Connected health devices can help patients and their healthcare providers more quickly identify the progress of diseases and better manage them for greater wellness. Here are five important benefits of using connected health devices.

Earlier detection of deteriorating health

Connected devices can help to increase the frequency of health checks in between in-office doctor visits, providing a more accurate view of patient health for providers to base treatment. Additionally, connected health devices act as an early warning system, alerting patients and approved medical providers when a patient’s health metrics aren’t ideal. They can also flag an unexpected sudden deterioration, limiting the risk of further complications. With vital health metrics monitored at frequent intervals, providers can intervene more quickly to prevent additional health complications, such as poorly-managed diabetes triggering hypertension.

Increase patient-provider bond

Remote patient monitoring (RPM) programs can create a stronger connection between patients and providers as patients have confidence that their conditions are being closely monitored. During office visits, providers have the opportunity to use the patient’s data as part of the shared decision-making process, allowing patients and providers to work together to create a care plan or fine-tune an existing one. Participation in an RPM program also provides physicians with an additional tool to track patient adherence to treatment plans.

Track progress toward health goals

Connected health devices empower patients to play a more active part in achieving their own wellness goals. When readings are taken daily or several times per week, patients can more easily track their progress. More frequent health measures help patients see how lifestyle choices like exercise and diet directly impact their health.

Share patient health data across a patient’s entire care team

With patient consent, health data from connected devices can be accessed by the patient’s entire care team. Especially for patients with complex health profiles, data from connected devices can foster greater collaboration between providers.

Expand provider capacity

Today, many healthcare systems are stretched thin. Remote patient monitoring empowers healthcare providers to be more proactive in managing patient care. Patients with well-managed chronic conditions are less likely to require more costly and resource-intensive acute care.

Use Cases for Connected Health Devices

The opportunities for remote patient monitoring and connected health devices are nearly endless, ensuring that conditions are detected early before complications can develop. This is even more important as all these conditions are linked with one another. To demonstrate how beneficial this technology can be, here are three ways RPM programs are being used successfully to improve health outcomes.

Diabetes prevention and obesity

Patients use a cellular- or Wifi-enabled digital scale to take frequent body weight measures, which can be automatically transmitted to the healthcare provider. Providers can use this data to spot trends, track adherence to a treatment plan, and evaluate the effectiveness of a weight management program. Frequent body weight measurements also help patients see how lifestyle choices directly impact their health.


Patients diagnosed with hypertension use a wireless blood pressure cuff to monitor their blood pressure regularly. This device automatically collects and transmits the reading, often with just the touch of a button. Using an RPM device for managing hypertension allows healthcare providers to track a patient’s blood pressure over time and can alert them to dangerous spikes in blood pressure that may require urgent intervention.

Sleep conditions

Sleep conditions like sleep apnea can be silent and are underdiagnosed. Using a sleep tracking mat helps to provide an objective measure to identify these conditions. Sleep specialists can use an under-mattress sleep mat to track a patient’s sleep patterns remotely, capturing metrics such as interruptions, time in bed before sleep, time to get out of bed in the morning, and other factors that can affect sleep quality. Some sleep mats, such as Withings’, can also detect snoring.

Withings Connected Devices for Managing Chronic Illness

Connected health devices are an important part of managing chronic illness. With over a decade of industry experience, Withings Health Solutions offers medical-grade devices that feature intuitive designs that encourage high user adoption and retention rates, including a sleep tracking mat, blood pressure monitor, and scale. And our physician dashboard offers intuitive, continuous access to patients’ critical health data in near-real time for actionable information to guide care.

Learn more about the Withings Health Solutions portfolio of smart health devices or request a demo.

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