Telemedicine helps examine sexual assault survivors in remote regions
June 16, 2015
The National Sexual Assault TeleNursing Center at the Newton Wellesley Hospital in Massachusetts is using telemedicine technology to deliver 24-hour remote expert consultation by specialist examiners to clinicians caring for sexual assault survivors in underserved regions.
"Sexual assault survivors have unique medical, emotional and forensic needs which require a trauma-informed approach to patient care," said Stacy Garrity, director of the, National TeleNursing Center. "This assures that assault survivors will be adequately supported while they make informed decisions regarding their medical care and involvement in the criminal justice system."
The technology is being provided through a partnership of Salt Lake City communications company ClearOne, American Doctors Online, PhoneDoctorx and the Massachusetts Department of Public Health. They are providing secure cloud-based communications between the National TeleNursing Center and telemedicine carts used by clinicians in remote locations throughout the USA.
ClearOne's Spontania platform provides the centre with a simple, secure and HIPAA-complaint method to conduct face-to-face video calls with remote facilities. The only physical task the remote clinician needs to perform is roll in the telemedicine cart and turn it on prior to establishing a connection with the national centre.
"This type of innovative telemedicine technology can improve the outcomes for patients by enabling the exchange of information from one site to another via a live, personal video communication," Garrity added. "When applied to SANE (sexual assault nurse examiner) practice, this has the potential to create a strong support community for clinicians, and increase their personal confidence, role satisfaction and retention on the job."
The Spontania cloud-based services empower professionals in medicine and many other industries to engage in wide-area, high-quality video and voice collaboration without the burden of expensive hardware or infrastructure. It also allows service providers and technical partners to expand their own offerings by deploying the technology within their own networks, building on other ClearOne technology to advance and enhance their range of conferencing and collaboration. In this case, remote clinicians can better serve their patients including those in typically underserved communities such as tribal nations, correctional institutions, rural populations and the military.
The National TeleNursing Center was established by the Massachusetts Department of Public Health with grant funding provided by the Office for Victim of Crime.