Telemedicine has quickly integrated into the operations of hospitals, specialty departments, home health agencies, private physician offices and other healthcare venues. Northern Arizona Healthcare has embraced telemedicine as part of the exceptional care we offer the communities we serve.
NAH is the main hospital in a region serving a vast expanse of major rural communities. Currently, we are bridging the distance between patients and providers in new, exciting ways through telemedicine.
Healthcare from the comfort of home
Today, patients commonly use a smartphone to upload their vital signs and send them to a care manager many miles away. This is especially useful for chronically ill patients in rural areas.
With Care beyond Walls and Wires, our Remote Patient Monitoring program, connecting from home means less unnecessary travel time and medical expenses – and a more consistent level of care.
Through this form of telemedicine, patients are given specialized Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) devices, including a weight scale, blood pressure machine, oximeter and thermometer. They are instructed to take their vitals on a daily basis, and as needed, as part of a regular self-care regimen. Care managers can view the patient’s vitals and alert notifications. They can help by contacting the patient or healthcare provider, and providing any essential interventions. This form of care will prevent avoidable hospital readmissions, and keep patients in the comfort of their own homes.
Our unique hub and spoke system
In telemedicine, the hub and spoke model connects larger “hub” hospitals, which offer a full array of services, with smaller “spoke” hospitals, which offer limited services. This allows for routing patients requiring services that are more intensive to the hub, for treatment through telemedicine consultations.
NAH is unique because we serve as both the hub and the spoke. This system enables us to provide and receive telemedicine consultations – not just with healthcare facilities in Northern Arizona, but also with medical facilities outside our area.
Exploring our telemedicine programs
Our telemedicine programs are available through many of Northern Arizona Healthcare’s centers and clinics, including:
- Care Beyond Walls and Wires, a remote monitoring program for individuals with chronic disease.
- Telestroke/Teleneurology, available at Flagstaff Medical Center, Verde Valley Medical Center and Verde Valley Medical Center – Sedona Campus.
- Teleburn in collaboration with Maricopa Integrated Health System.
- Specialty telemedicine for the pediatric population in collaboration with the Children’s Health Center.
- Specialty telemedicine with a neurological movement specialist at Banner Health.