Guam Regional Medical Center’s new home IV antibiotic therapy program is allowing some patients to return home from the hospital sooner, the hospital announced Tuesday.
In a press release, GRMC described the program, launched by Infectious Disease Physician Michele Yamamoto. Under the new program, patients who require antibiotic treatment are outfitted with a portable IV unit and taught how to administer their own doses at home.
Since the program’s launch at the beginning of the year, about 30 GRMC patients have either enrolled in or completed the home IV therapy program.
According to Dr. Yamamoto, leaving the hospital early has both financial and health benefits for the patient.
“It reduces the risk of getting a hospital acquired infection. They get to be in their own home with their family, and some patients can even return to work, if they’re receiving medication only once a day,” Yamamoto said in the release.
In addition, Yamamoto said, the program reduces costs for the patient and the hospital. It also allows GRMC to free up beds for patients in need of more critical care.
GRMC offers home IV therapy for bone or joint infections, heart valve infections, deep skin and soft tissue infections, and other conditions needing sustained antibiotic treatment.
Through the GRMC Social Services Department, patients in the program are also signed up with one of five home health nursing companies on Guam. Home nurses visit the patient at home each day, check the status of the patient and the IV line, and answer questions.
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