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Daily FYI

October 06, 2009

Preventing hospital visits through telemedicine

Source: World Health Organization

In the United Kingdom, where 17 million people – more than a quarter of the population – are living with chronic conditions, a new telemedicine programme shows how medical care provided by general practitioners and nurses for such patients can be complemented with “supported self-care”.

The benefits of a telephone support programme operating in Birmingham are obvious to Beryl Keating, who has been enrolled now for two years. Keating has had asthma and lung problems since she was 14; she now has chronic obstructive pulmonary disease. “My care manager has been such a great help. I now feel much more confident about phoning the doctor for test results, or to make an appointment, or to say if something is wrong,”

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Telemedicine Increasing Role in Health Care

Source: Wired PR News

An increasing number of medical practitioners are implementing the use of electronic communications equipment into their practices.

The role of telemedicine, which is the transference of medical information via cell phone, the Internet, or other networks is increasing as the use of technologies such as email and other electronic forms of data transmission expands. As reported by HealthDay News, the popularity of telemedicine has left some to suggest it will eventually become a part of routine medical practices.

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Telemedicine allows for long-distance diagnoses

Source: The Washington Times

The field of telemedicine has come a long way since a Harvard professor figured out a way to examine patients via television cameras so he wouldn't have to fight traffic in a long car ride each day.

Dr. Kenneth Bird, a Harvard professor affiliated with Massachusetts General Hospital, was moonlighting as medical director at Boston's Logan Airport in the late 1960s when necessity became the mother of invention. Tired of making an hourlong drive between the airport and hospital, a route that took him under the Charles River, he suspected there was a better way.

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Low-Energy Wireless: Just what the doctor ordered

Source: ECNmag.com

... Telehealth is one of the primary applications for low-energy wireless connectivity in medicine. Telehealth is a broad term used to describe telemedicine, telemonitoring and telecare. Wireless technology is making a huge impact in telemonitoring by enabling remote patient monitoring for the healthy (preventative medicine) and for those that require management of chronic diseases. Wireless technology will allow doctors to improve quality of care by providing a new method to collect more relevant data, more frequently and at a lower cost.

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Missouri Telemedicine Project Links Patients to Medical Interpreters

Source: iHealthBeat

New videoconferencing services are helping non-English speakers in Missouri communicate with their physicians, the St. Louis Post-Dispatch reports.

The Missouri Telehealth Interpretation Project links the Missouri Telehealth Network with interpreters from St. Louis' Language Access Metro Project.

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ExpressMD(TM) Solutions Selected to Supply Chronic Heart Disease Telehealth Program in Florida

Source: PRNewswire

ExpressMD(TM) Solutions, a provider of telehealth monitoring systems and services for patients with chronic illnesses, announced today that it has entered into an agreement with Dr. Benedict Maniscalco to utilize its Electronic House Call(TM) telehealth monitoring solution in his cardiology practice as well as for his new Florida based Chronic Heart Disease program for Congestive Heart Failure (CHF) patients. The Electronic House Call telehealth solution allows physicians to remotely monitor patient vital signs, thereby helping to reduce the cost of patient care while enabling health care providers to improve their patients' medical outcomes.

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Telemedicine is just as vital to healthcare reform as insurance coverage

Source: Fierce Mobile Healthcare

We've known about the power of telemedicine for some time, but it's good to see the news making it into the general press. It's equally satisfying to see someone talking about telemedicine in the context of healthcare reform, because anyone who's read my recent columns at FierceHealthIT or FierceEMR knows how frustrated I am with the debate focusing almost exclusively on insurance coverage, as opposed to real improvements in the quality of care. But that's exactly what Dr. David Steinhaus, medical director of Medtronic Cardiac Rhythm Disease Management, did in a Washington Post op-ed last week, encouragingly headlined, "Telemedicine Is Here."

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