Thursday, July 16, 2015

MEDICINE - Here Comes Teladoc

"Telemedicine puts a doctor virtually at your bedside" PBS NewsHour 7/13/2015


SUMMARY:  Video conferencing technology can now connect patients and physicians almost instantaneously, offering convenience, efficiency and savings.  But what happens to the doctor-patient relationship if you're never in the same room? Hari Sreenivasan reports.

JUDY WOODRUFF (NewsHour):  Videoconferencing has become so commonplace that we have grown comfortable communicating with one another through pixels on a screen.

That comfort, combined with rapid advances in health monitoring technology, is fueling a new boom in telemedicine.  Teladoc, a big player in providing video and telephone medical consults, had an extremely successful launch when it went public on the stock market earlier this month.  It raised more than $270 million on the first day.

As Hari Sreenivasan explains, telemedicine is beginning to transform the way we experience the medical system.  It’s the latest in our Breakthroughs series on invention and innovation.

HARI SREENIVASAN (NewsHour):  A simple ritual, like gardening on a hot summer day, is something Tom and Trisha Uhrhammer don’t take for granted anymore.

TRISHA UHRHAMMER:  Can you use some basil?

HARI SREENIVASAN:  Just a year ago, Tom had a massive stroke.

TOM UHRHAMMER:  I was sitting right next door here in this room watching TV.  Time to go to bed.  So I got up and walked up the stairs, and I didn’t make it.  I collapsed short of the bed.

HARI SREENIVASAN:  The paramedics took Tom, who was paralyzed on his left side, to nearby Mercy General Hospital in Sacramento.  With blood seeping into his skull, creating enormous pressure on his brain, time was of the essence.  That’s when a telestroke robot was deployed to the E.R.

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