Sitting with his wife of 45 years on a park bench with a view of Lake Simcoe, Harold
started to have difficulty breathing. Oxygen
from the tank he brought didn’t help, so Judy
called 911. “We could hear the ambulance coming,” recalls Harold. “I got on the stretcher and I don’t remember anything after that.
I was in the ICU for a couple of days on life
Harold has experienced triple bypass surgery
and at 72 years of age, is living with diabetes,
congestive heart failure and has difficulty
breathing. Harold shares, “My diaphragm is
paralyzed. Only one of my lungs is working so
I am short of breath all the time. I sit down
for 2 minutes and then I am okay.”
Referred to the NSM CCAC Telehomecare program
by his doctor after coming home from
hospital, Harold was connected to Joanne,
a CCAC nurse. Over 6 months, Harold had
weekly health coaching calls with Joanne and
monitored his vital signs and symptoms daily.
“It was the first thing I did every morning
when I got up,” says Harold. “I’d check my
weight, blood pressure and my oxygen level
every day, just to see how everything was
going.” Harold would then use a tablet to
input his health information, which was then
transmitted to Joanne. “Joanne would call
once a week, and if there was a problem
she’d call right away. She encouraged me to
ask questions,” states Harold.
Working with Joanne, Harold met all of his
care goals and reflected on the experience.
“The main thing is that you’re doing it every
day and you are aware of how things are
going,” he explains. “I still take readings once
a week. Definitely a positive experience.”
"It is my privilege to work with Harold and Judy as they put their learning into practical ways to improve their health. It is very rewarding watching a transformation take place in chronic disease management and I look forward to this type of nursing continuing to be a vital part of the community care setting."
Joanne Walker, CCAC Telehomecare Nurse
In 2014-15, people living with congestive heart failure (CHF) and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) were enrolled in the CCAC's new Telehomecare Program.
Since June, over 2,670 health coaching and alert management calls with patients and their families were completed.
Of the patients enrolled, 36% live with CHF and 64% live with COPD.