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iDoctor: SCKMC Considers Telehospitalists

April 19, 2015

South Central Kansas Medical Center in Ark City is currently considering a proposal from Eagle to provide the telehospitalist service locally. The concept was discussed during the hospital’s February Board of Trustees meeting, with an onsite demonstration by Eagle scheduled to take place later this month.

Arkansas City, KS - Science Fiction predicted that the human race should already be living in a world of flying cars, and robots taking care of our every need. While we may still be a ways off from hovering our way down the road, robots are becoming increasingly common in our lives.

     One of the most advanced areas for the use of this technology is healthcare. From diagnostic testing to surgical procedures, state-of-the-art equipment is improving the quality of healthcare. It should come as no surprise that the next level of technology based healthcare actually combines a doctor with robotics.

     The nationwide physician shortage and a trend towards hospital based physicians have prompted companies, such as Eagle Hospital Physicians of Atlanta Georgia, to form “telehospitalist” programs. Telehospitalist patients are seen and diagnosed via a system which allows the physician to interact with both patient and staff. Listening to the patient’s heart and lungs, checking the pupils, asking and answering questions, and more can all be done with a physician who is based thousands of miles away. 

    The telehospitalist concept allows hospitals to expand upon the level of service offered to its inpatients, particularly at night, while relieving the local physicians of call coverage. The telehospitalist works closely with the patient’s local physician to discuss appropriate treatment options, and to provide a seamless transition of care after dismissal.     

     South Central Kansas Medical Center in Ark City is currently considering a proposal from Eagle to provide the telehospitalist service locally. The concept was discussed during the hospital’s February Board of Trustees meeting, with an onsite demonstration by Eagle scheduled to take place later this month.

SCKMC Chief Executive Officer, Virgil Watson, thinks the program could be beneficial for the hospital. something that “we should definitely consider,” according to Watson.

“It is not the least expensive (option), but is certainly lower cost than having bodies in the building. It is something that we should definitely consider,” Watson said.

     A demonstration of the Eagle telehospitalist program is available on YouTube at: http://youtu.be/AJ5mauDjTuA