CHI Health Schuyler introduces new telemedicine service

October 7, 2018

CHI Health Schuyler physicians and nurses are receiving additional support in the emergency room with the introduction of Avera eCARE Emergency services.

“It’s just having that second set of eyes,” said Claudia Lanuza, project and foundation coordinator at CHI Health Schuyler. “It’s very beneficial to our most critical cases and having that support and in some cases, it actually avoids some transfers.”

Since its Sept. 25 start date, Lanuza said the service has opened the door with a push of a button for emergency care specialists nationwide to remotely provide back up to in-house physicians and nurses during emergency situations such as stroke, heart attack, trauma or serious injuries.

According to information provided by CHI Health Schuyler, Avera eCARE offers one of the largest telehealth networks in the U.S., supporting more than 380 health centers, clinics, long-term care centers and correctional facilities within a 14-state region.

This telemedicine network is utilized at 330 sites nationwide, saving up to $188 million in total health care costs and serving more than 1 million patients, according to its official website.

When physicians come across a hurdle in the 24-hour Emergency Room, Lanuza said they can seek quick responses and help through the network equipped with high-definition video and audio equipment and software. She said it’s beneficial to have access to the second set of eyes and ears, especially during critical cases.

eCARE Emergency supports patient care in numerous ways, such as providing 24-hour access to board-certified emergency physicians, connecting rural communities to highly-trained specialists, ensuring quicker response of emergency transport teams and reducing transfers so patients can remain close to home or within their preferred hospitals. It also promotes a collaborative approach to patient care.

Avera eCARE also provides telemedicine network services for various other branches of health care, such as behavioral health, correctional health, pharmacy, specialty clinic, school health, senior care and Intensive Care Unit.

“eCARE Emergency gives us the ability to extend and enhance the level of health care in our community,” said Connie Peters, president of CHI Health Schuyler through a released statement. “It gives us access to the same type of specialists available in larger acute care hospitals, enabling us to deliver better care, right here in our community, and keep patients here whenever possible.”

Lanuza said she hopes to see community members take advantage of the services provided during the Family Fall Health Fair from 7:30-10:30 a.m. on Saturday at the hospital, 104 W. 17 St.

Attendees can undergo free blood pressure, body mass index, colon and skin cancers screenings, in addition to a $35 blood wellness panel where attendees will receive valuable health information, from blood sugar to cholesterol to kidney function.

Those wishing to learn more about the fair are encouraged to call CHI Health Schuyler at 402-352-2441 or CHI Health Clinic at 402-352-3745.

Natasya Ong is a reporter for the Schuyler Sun. Reach her via email at natasya.ong@lee.net.

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