Telemonitoring and Care Program for Left Ventricular Assist Device Patients during COVID-19 Outbreak: A European Experience

S. Mariani, A. Schode, K. Homann, S. Feueriegel, S. Noth, K. Warnke, K. Bounader, A. Andreeva, T. Li, G. Dogan, A. Haverich, J.D. Schmitto*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review


Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) radically modified the organization of healthcare systems with shutdown of routine activities and outpatient clinics. Herein, we report our institutional experience with a Telemonitoring and Care Program (TC-Program) to monitor and support left ventricular assist device (LVAD) patients during COVID-19 outbreak. This single-arm cohort study analyzed 156 patients who entered the TC-Program at our institution between April and August 2020. The TC-Program was based on routine phone calls to patients and a 24/7 emergency line. In November 2020, patients were asked for feedback on the TC-Program and checked for survival, transplant, or explant. The primary endpoint was the rate of TC-Program-driven interventions. Patients (males: 82.8%) were 61 years old (interquartile range [IQR]: 53.0-67.5) and on LVAD support for 1,266 days (IQR: 475-2,211). Patients were included in the TC-Program for a median time of 99 days (min:15, max:120) and received a median number of six phone calls (min:1, max:14). Twenty-three patients (14.7%) were referred for clinical evaluation after phone contact. Two patients (1.27%) were diagnosed with COVID-19: one of them died after intensive care, and one remained paucisymptomatic and recovered. Three patients asked to exit the program considering it not useful while the others gave high rates in terms of usefulness (median: 9, IQR: 8-10), information (median: 9, IQR: 8-10), good medical care (median: 9, IQR: 8-10), and psychologic support (median: 8, IQR: 7-10). A TC-Program based on the four ICSA principles (Inform, Care, Support, and Adapt) is feasible in LVAD patients and can be rapidly implemented during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)973-981
Number of pages9
JournalAsaio Journal
Issue number9
Publication statusPublished - 1 Sept 2021


  • COVID-19
  • TIME
  • coronavirus
  • heart failure
  • left ventricular assist device
  • mechanical circulatory support
  • telemonitoring

Cite this