How Virtual Monitoring Can Help Preeclampsia Mortality

May 28, 2024

Preeclampsia occurs in 5 to 7% of all pregnancies in the United States. In fact, the CDC states that preeclampsia is responsible for over 70,000 maternal and 500,000 fetal deaths worldwide. But those numbers are likely underreported as preeclampsia can go undetected with zero symptoms. Even more so, preeclampsia affects underserved populations at a much higher rate. While our current healthcare climate makes it more difficult for patients in need to receive care, the rate of maternal morbidities keeps growing. Adding in virtual monitoring to better detect a rising risk could help connect patients with their providers faster and more efficiently. 

What is preeclampsia

Preeclampsia is a pregnancy complication that can cause high blood pressure and organ damage–typically the liver or kidneys. If left untreated, this condition can be life-threatening. Typically detected after 20 weeks of pregnancy, it can develop even if an early pregnancy showed no signs at all. 


Symptoms vary from one pregnancy to the next, but the main symptoms are elevated protein levels in urine and high blood pressure. 

Other symptoms can include: 

  • Decreased levels of platelets in blood (thrombocytopenia)
  • Increased liver enzymes that indicate liver problems
  • Severe headaches
  • Changes in vision, including temporary loss of vision, blurred vision or light sensitivity
  • Shortness of breath, caused by fluid in the lungs
  • Pain in the upper belly, usually under the ribs on the right side
  • Nausea or vomiting

Risk factors

It’s difficult to label a patient as high-risk for preeclampsia. Currently there are no recommended tests that can predict the onset. However, being under 20 or over 40, having a previous history or carrying multiples can increase the risk. Other risk factors may include: 

  • Chronic high blood pressure
  • Type 1 or type 2 diabetes before pregnancy
  • Kidney issues
  • Autoimmune disorders
  • Obesity 
  • Family history 
  • Having a 10 year gap between pregnancies 

Seemingly this range of factors can be difficult to test or track from one patient to the next. Currently urine tests to detect protein counts and blood pressure readings are taken at each prenatal visit. That’s about once a month for 28 weeks, then twice or more from there after. But that doesn’t account for the large number of pregnant persons who miss appointments or aren’t receiving prenatal care at all. 

What can be done

As stated previously, the rate of preeclampsia is rising, now considered the main cause of maternal mortality. According to the March of Dimes if you’re at high risk for preeclampsia, taking lose doses of baby asprin can help. And while that option can be life-saving, frequent monitoring and testing is crucial for an actual diagnosis. Yet, nearly 7% of all pregnancies in the United State receive little to no prenatal care. Lack of transportation, childcare and more can cause this. 

Consistent, virtual monitoring is a great way to engage patients in their care but more importantly gives clinics easy access to vitals and results quickly and consistently. Not meant to replace frequent in-clinic visits, but as an additional layer to catch so many families that are at a higher risk or need more frequent monitoring. 

SimpliFed’s mOS model works with patients before delivery. We monitor a patient's blood pressure via state-of-the-art RPMs. All this, while also encouraging the adoption of frequent prenatal care. And our strong relationship with systems and providers enables us to flag patients and communicate data with their at home care team quickly and effectively–when time matters the most. 

Frequent monitoring, done more efficiently, with more patients and higher adoption rates.


The rate of preeclampsia cases may not slow down but we can help stop serious, life-threatening complications. For more information or to work with SimpliFed, please contact us.