Curious boy hearing secret

DOT Telemedicine Backpack: Secrets Revealed

If you’ve ever wondered just how swyMed’s DOT Telemedicine Backpack can maintain a strong, reliable internet connection in low-bandwidth environments, you’re not alone—it’s a question that has intrigued many curious minds. It does carry redundant dual-modem connections and antennas, but the secret ingredient is none other than the Silver Peak Unity EdgeConnect™ software-defined wide-area networking (SD-WAN) edge platform. As explained in a recent Network World article, this technology improves the performance of existing wireless network communications and is able to connect even when it’s far from wireless towers. Read more

North Sea fishing cutter

Bringing mHealth to Alaska’s Fishermen

Popularized by TV shows like “Deadliest Catch,” fishing in the northern Pacific and the Bering Sea has been shown to be a dangerous occupation. Even worse, traditionally there has been no access to healthcare while at sea; anyone with medical issues had to either wait until the ship returns to port or summon a costly emergency extraction by helicopter in unforgiving weather conditions. However, with the advent of telemedicine and mHealth, things are changing; as long as they can hold a good Internet connection, they have instant access to physicians who can direct those on board in giving care and support to start treatment and improve triage. Recently, Alaska Maritime Physicians (AMP) partnered with DrChrono to do just that. Read more

Butterfly iQ photo

New Handheld Telemedicine Ultrasound Will Revolutionize Mobile Healthcare

As telemedicine brings health care beyond hospital walls, medical devices are quickly following—like the portable ultrasound. Unlike traditional ultrasound machines or even unwieldy 10-pound laptop ultrasounds, the newest handheld telemedicine ultrasound to hit the market—the Butterfly iQ—fits easily in a doctor’s pocket, carries an affordable price tag, and promises to help EMTs and physicians diagnose patients in the field and en route to the hospital. Some experts are even hailing this development as the equivalent of the introduction of smartphones or tablets in the computing world, saying that we’re only beginning to see the implications of the mobile ultrasound. Read more

"equal pay" street signs

Telemedicine Payment Parity Fails in Pennsylvania

Pennsylvania remains one of the few states that still lacks a dedicated Telemedicine Act. In an attempt to address both telemedicine payment parity and professional regulation in one Act, Pennsylvania Senate Bill 780—including its clause on coverage and reimbursement for its use—was unanimously approved last June by two Pennsylvania Senate committees, the full Senate, and the House Professional Licensure Committee. However, it failed to pass in the House of Representatives in October. Read more

JKroon & EGerritsen, presenting award

swyMed Wins Smart Solutions Award

Just this week, at the World of Health Care 2018 (WoHC), conference delegates voted swyMed as the winner of the Smart Solutions Award due to our DOT Telemedicine Backpack’s innovations in tackling challenges to modernize, optimize, and increase the quality, affordability, and accessibility of healthcare. Read more

Mick with Backpack overlooking valley

Alaska Puts DOT Backpack to the Test for Rural Telemedicine

As one of the most sparsely populated areas in the country, Alaska presents a host of challenges for rural telemedicine, such as having sufficient bandwidth to support the demands of live video, but it also offers a wealth of opportunities for the industry—namely, minimizing highly inconvenient travel requirements and allowing specialists to see more patients within a given day. Recently, Partners In Energy (PIE) Advisors put the swyMed DOT Telemedicine Backpack to the test in Alaska’s wilderness to test its connectivity and performance in extremely remote, unforgiving environments, with the ultimate goal of using this tool to deliver a higher standard of healthcare to the underserved indigenous population. Read more

anxious woman biting nails

Home Telepsychiatry Reduces Anxiety, Saves Lives

Telemedicine has often been touted as a solution for remote regions with physician shortages, but one area of medicine is finding that telemedicine brings unexpected benefits, even if the patient lives right around the corner. Home telepsychiatry brings psychotherapy to the patient and meets the patient’s needs where he/she is. In the process, the physician can gain invaluable insight into the patient’s living situation—insight that might otherwise take weeks to uncover during in-office therapy sessions. For instance, a patient once complained of a cluttered home; she turned out to be a hoarder. The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) has discovered especially intriguing results from using home telepsychiatry. Read more

ambulance hurrying down street

Anthem Begins EMS Reimbursements, Even without Transport

When it comes to EMS reimbursements—even without transferring the patient—Anthem BlueCross BlueShield is leading the way. In an era when community paramedicine, mobile healthcare concepts, and telemedicine programs have sometimes struggled to garner financial support, Anthem quietly began paying for on-site treatment by EMS in situations where the consult does not result in a ride to the emergency department. Read more

elderly woman at home on telemedicine visit

New Budget Deal Boosts Telemedicine Coverage

Earlier this month, President Donald Trump signed into law a bipartisan budget deal that impacts Medicare’s telemedicine coverage more than any past legislation, as described by one senator. After a brief government shutdown, Congress approved a two-year budget deal including parts of the Creating High-Quality Results and Outcomes Necessary to Improve Chronic (CHRONIC) Care Act, the Furthering Access to Stroke Telemedicine (FAST) Act, and the Increasing Telehealth Access to Medicare Act. Read more

5G wireless network antenna clipart

For Telemedicine, 5G Networks Hold Promise

The recent speculation over whether the U.S. federal government might build a 5G network brings up an intriguing question: Does telemedicine need 5G networks? At first glance, the answer may appear to be a resounding “Yes” because most telemedicine systems require high-bandwidth networks in order to function reliably. However, a closer look at the current market suggests that a more cautious approach may be warranted. When it comes to telemedicine, 5G may not be a panacea after all—at least not today. Read more