VA’s new telehealth system off to impressive start
Trinity applauds The Department of Veterans Affairs leadership for its decision to further integrate telehealth into their current care model. Although the VA has been using telehealth on a limited basis for close to a dozen years, it just recently showcased its more robust telehealth system, a service designed to allow thousands of veterans from remote parts of the country to consult with specialists in medical facilities hundreds of miles away.
According to the VA, about 80,000 veterans took part in more than 200,000 telehealth consultations with doctors and therapists in 2012. The virtual appointments included vets receiving care and counseling for chronic medical conditions and for mental health counseling.
On display at the event were various monitors the VA is able to place in the homes of veteran patients to regularly monitor heart rate, blood pressure and more. Linked to a home computer or even the telephone, data from the monitor is instantly transmitted to the veteran’s VA provider for review. “[Telehealth] is really making our system much more accessible to veterans that have had difficulty in the past accessing it,” stated Dr. Robert Petzel, Under Secretary of Health at the VA. Petzel also noted that the telehealth conferences, consultations and therapy sessions are not recorded and are not made part of a veteran’s health record.
To date, the benefits of the VA’s telehealth program are measurable, as it has reduced veterans’ bed days by 58 percent and admissions by 38 percent. Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., chairman of the Senate Veterans Affairs Committee, praised the telehealth program when he addressed event attendees on Tuesday. The VA is doing “cutting-edge work” in telehealth, Sanders said, “which the rest of the medical community around the country I think is going to learn from. They are taking advantage of modern technology in a very aggressive way to improve high-quality and cost-effective health care to their patients.”
Medical professionals across the globe are turning to technology solutions to help them provide more accessible healthcare services. Trinity Video Communications views telehealth as one of the most strategic and significant facets to improving healthcare and achieving the goals of the Affordable Care Act and is actively developing innovative products to meet the growing demand for quality, less-expensive healthcare.
If your organization is seeking a low-cost, high-tech solution to provide accessible healthcare services, then consider Trinity’s Touchscreen Mobile Telemedicine Station. This unit is designed to work in any healthcare environment. Some of the features include an easy-to-use touchscreen interface, high-definition camera and height-adjustable tabletop with antibacterial work surface.
Visit our Healthcare Solutions page for more details on Trinity’s Mobile Telemedicine Station or contact us today at 1-800-261-9008 to speak with a Trinity representative. Schedule a demo at our Louisville, Kentucky or Sterling, Virginia office locations.