Comprehensive Telehealth Interventions Help Adults with Chronic Diseases

A doctor refers to a computer while on the telephone.The Community Preventive Services Task Force (CPSTF) recommends comprehensive telehealth interventions to supplement the care of adults who have chronic diseases that are affected by diet. This recommendation is based on strong evidence of effectiveness in improving dietary outcomes such as diet quality, fruit and vegetable intake, and dietary sodium intake.

Comprehensive telehealth interventions allow healthcare providers and patients to communicate in person or at a distance by phone, email, web-based programs, or other electronic or digital media to discuss chronic disease management information.

A team of specialists in systematic review methods and in nutrition research, practice, and policy selected and evaluated a published systematic review of 25 randomized controlled trials:

Kelly JT, Reidlinger DP, Hoffmann TC, Campbell KL. Telehealth methods to deliver dietary interventions in adults with chronic disease: a systematic review and meta-analysis. American Journal of Clinical Nutrition 2016;104(6):1693-702.

The CPSTF recommendation is based on results from the review and expert input from team members and the CPSTF.

Chronic disease continues to be a leading cause of death, disability, and healthcare costs in the United States. Today, one in two U.S. adults has a chronic disease while one in four U.S. adults has two or more (CDC, 2017). Reducing excessive sodium intake and increasing fruit and vegetable consumption can substantially reduce U.S. healthcare costs associated with cardiovascular disease (Zhang et al., 2017).

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