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Mayo Clinic Expands Emergency Telemedicine Services

August 22, 2016
by Heather Landi
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Rochester, Minn.-based Mayo Clinic is implementing a new telemedicine strategy and will converge its emergency telemedicine practice in order to provide scalable, standardized services across its nationwide telemedicine enterprise.

Previously, Mayo Clinic had worked with numerous vendors as it grew its emergency telemedicine practice. By converging all its services and practices, Mayo Clinic will be able to work with one vendor in order to consolidate effort and create a scalable delivery model. According to a Mayo Clinic press release, this convergence positions the health system to enhance the telemedicine services it offers to the more than 45 hospitals across nine states served by its emergency telemedicine services.

Emergency telemedicine provides acute medical assessments to people who need immediate emergency care through video communications. A Mayo Clinic medical specialist located at a distance from the patient connects via technology with local care teams to assess, diagnose and treat patients.

“By combining the breadth and depth of Mayo Clinic knowledge and expertise with a standardized technology across the enterprise, we will be able to create a comprehensive, integrated, multispecialty emergency telemedicine program. Through this program, we can provide specialty consults and guidance for medical and surgical emergencies in adults and children,” Bart Demaerschalk, M.D., a Mayo Clinic neurologist and the medical director of synchronous (telemedicine) services for the Mayo Clinic Center for Connected Care, said in a prepared statement.

The initial telemedicine service lines to participate in this convergence are telestroke and teleneonatology. Mayo Clinic already provides care to more than 5,000 people per year through these service lines. The convergence enables Mayo Clinic to assist more patients across more sites, according to Demaerschalk.

“This is an exciting milestone for connected care at Mayo Clinic,” Christopher Colby, M.D., chair of the Pediatrics Neonatal Medicine Division and telehealth director for pediatrics at Mayo Clinic, said in a statement. “We will now offer a technology platform specifically designed to deliver emergent telemedicine consultation. Perhaps equally as important is that this will bring expertise from the Mayo Clinic enterprise together to develop world-class telemedicine across many service lines.”

The first phase of this convergence will begin in late summer and continue through the first part of 2017.


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