Telemedicine is used by numerous major hospitals now to carry medical expertise out into the field via computer, cameras, phones and any other technology you can likely imagine.
It's being used in medical facilities surrounding Chesterfield. Mercy Hospital won a federal grant worth $495,926 earlier this year to spread the reach of telemedicine to southwest Missouri, according to a report on stltoday.com in May.
Doctors and nurses may monitor intensive care patients remotely, for example, and alert staff on site.
Stroke patients, for example, in areas where there may not be specialists in the flesh, may still get expert treatment through telemedicine.
Via cameras in clinics and hospital rooms, remote medical staff may zoom in for a look at symptoms, how patients are healing, and chat with patients—according to stltoday.com
Apparently, the use of telemedicine in the St. Louis area is in its early stages and again, stltoday.com reports that doctors and nurses are using telemedicine at Sisters of Mercy Health System, SSM Health Care, BJC HealthCare, and Washington University.
The increase in the use of telemedicine is considered an improvement in health care, for example in rural areas where typically it is difficult to keep personnel or access treatment.
Additionally, telemedicine can provide preventative treatment or earlier detection—a plus in patient health and huge in cost-savings for treatment.
Remember the doctor in Antarctic who sent a biopsy image to doctors remotely and learned she had cancer? That was in 1999, Dr. Jerri Nielsen. She got treatment started with medicine airlifted to the South Pole, and lived another 10 years after eventual surgery.