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What is Telemedicine?
Telemedicine is the remote delivery of healthcare services and clinical information using telecommunications technology. This includes a wide array of clinical services using internet, wireless, satellite and telephone media.
"Telemedicine is not a separate medical specialty. Products and services related to telemedicine are often part of a larger investment by health care institutions in either information technology or the delivery of clinical care... Patient consultations via video conferencing, transmission of still images, e-health including patient portals, remote monitoring of vital signs, continuing medical education, consumer-focused wireless applications and nursing call centers, among other applications, are all considered part of telemedicine and telehealth."
-The American Telemedicine Association
Telemedicine is a rapidly growing component of healthcare in the United States. There are currently about 200 telemedicine networks, with 3,500 service sites in the U.S. These networks and sites served 800,000 patient visits in 2014. An additional 550,000 Intensive Care patients were remotely monitored, and 250,000 strokes were diagnosed via telemedicine.
Nearly 1 million Americans are currently using remote cardiac monitors and in 2011, the Veterans Health Administration delivered more than 300,000 remote consultations using telemedicine. More than half of all U.S. hospitals now use some form of telemedicine. Around the world, millions of patients use telemedicine to monitor their vital signs, and remain healthy and out of hospitals and emergency rooms. Consumers and physicians can download health and wellness applications for use on their cell phones.
SIU HealthCare's Telehealth program provides access to care through virtual care strategies that bring our specialists and primary care providers to your location through video and telecommunications technologies. With more than 20 clinical specialties and subspecialties delivered via Telehealth, care close to home is now a reality for many patients and their families. Close collaboration with local primary care providers is enhanced when Telehealth is used. Please read on to find out how you can access care through SIU Telehealth.
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