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Clinical Telemedicine Programs


Children’s Clinical Telemedicine Team designs, develops and executes strategies that use electronic and telecommunications technologies to improve access to care and outcomes for children throughout the region, the nation and the world. The telemedicine program serves community hospitals, suburban health centers and inner-city health clinics across a wide range of pediatric subspecialties including neurology, genetics, radiology, and general surgery.

The team provides medical consultation for patients who require medical expertise that is not available locally through live interaction (videoconferencing), as well as store and forward processes (such as emailing a digital picture).The clinical program is dedicated to building relationships between medical teams at distant sites and includes:

Telecardiology

The echocardiography laboratory is connected via telemedicine to nine community hospitals, allowing for instant diagnoses and treatment of infants with suspected heart disease throughout the region. The team also conducts cardiac surgery collaboration in the Middle East and China, as well as through a Cardiac Outreach Program in Uganda. More than 4,000 consultations have been conducted since 1998.

Within minutes of ordering an echocardiogram, the referring hospital and Children’s team can connect via the telemedicine system. Through a desktop computer and high bandwidth telephone connection, Children’s doctors watch the echocardiogram live, in real time as a sonographer performs the study at the referring hospital. During the telemedicine encounter, Children’s pediatric cardiologist guides the sonographer through the study, and teaches about complex pediatric diagnoses. The cardiologist provides immediate feedback to the referring pediatrician or neonatologist during the teleconference and also communicates directly to the parents of the babies. Hundreds of critically ill babies have received prompt medical treatment, and several dozen babies with life threatening heart defects have benefited tremendously from this service.

Teleneurology

Children’s teleneurology network provides remote interpretations of electroencephalographs (EEGs) for three community hospitals. More than 400 consultations have been provided since 2003.

Teleoncology

Children’s has been involved in establishing a Tele-Tumor Board with other healthcare facilities. A patient referral facility collects patient data and images that can be used for interdisciplinary discussions of treatment options and reviews of brain tumor pathology.

Teleradiology

To address the demand for consultations for radiology and cardiology on nights or weekends, Children’s is using telemedicine to connect Children’s physicians at home. With proper security installed to protect patients’ privacy, the physicians can provide consultations at any time. Also, Children’s physicians can monitor patients at home via computers for various conditions.

Multisubspeciality

The telemedicine program serves community hospitals, suburban health centers and inner-city health clinics across a wide range of pediatric subspecialties by building multisubspeciality relationships to provide world-class care, including:
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