Objective: To evaluate the effect of activity monitoring and bidirectional text messaging on the rate of discharge to home and clinical outcomes in patients receiving hip or knee arthroplasty.

Methods / Measures: The primary outcome was discharge status (home vs skilled nursing facility or inpatient rehabilitation). Prespecified secondary outcomes included change in average daily step count and rehospitalizations.

Results: A total of 242 patients were analyzed (124 usual care, 118 intervention); median age was 66 years (interquartile range, 58-73 years); 78.1% were women, 45.5% were White, 43.4% were Black; and 81.4% in the intervention arm agreed to receive monitoring. There was no significant difference in the rate of discharge to home between the usual care arm (57.3%; 95% CI, 48.5%-65.9%) and the intervention arm (56.8%; 95% CI, 47.9%-65.7%) and no significant increase in step count in those receiving remote monitoring plus gamification and social support compared with remote monitoring alone. There was a statistically significant reduction in rehospitalization rate in the intervention arm (3.4%; 95% CI, 0.1%-6.7%) compared with the usual care arm (12.2%; 95% CI, 6.4%-18.0%) (P = .01).

Conclusions: In this study, the remote monitoring program did not increase rate of discharge to home after hip or knee arthroplasty, and gamification and social support did not increase activity levels. There was a significant reduction in rehospitalizations among those receiving the intervention, which may have resulted from goal setting and connection to the care team.

Trial Registration: ClinicalTrials.gov Identifier: NCT03435549.

DOI: 10.1001/jamanetworkopen.2020.28328