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Comparison of Health Buddy® with Traditional Approaches to Heart Failure Management

LaFramboise, Louise M. RN, PhD; Todero, Catherine M. RN, PhD; Zimmerman, Lani RN, PhD; Agrawal, Sangeeta MS


The purpose of this pilot study was to (a) determine the feasibility of providing a heart failure disease management program through an in-home telehealth communication device (Health Buddy®) and (b) compare the effectiveness of the Health Buddy® with traditional home management strategies (telephonic, home visit) in achieving selected patient outcomes (self-efficacy, functional status, depression, and health-related quality of life). Ninety participants completed the study through 2 months. Thirty percent of participants were either eliminated prior to or withdrawn after enrollment from the study based on Health Buddy® issues. A mixed model ANOVA revealed those who received telephonic disease management experienced decreased confidence in their ability to manage their heart failure whereas all other groups experienced increased confidence. Further ANOVA analyses indicated improvement over time with no group differences for functional status, depression, or health-related quality of life. These findings suggest that delivering a disease management program through a telehealth communication device is feasible and may be as effective as traditional methods.

From the College of Nursing, University of Nebraska Medical Center, Omaha.

Corresponding author: Louise M. LaFramboise, RN, PhD, Assistant Professor, University of Nebraska, College of Nursing, 985330 Nebraska Medical Center, Omaha, NE 68198-5330 (e-mail:

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