Our December meeting of Health TechNet was held on Friday, December 14 at Nelson Mullins’ offices in Washington, D.C.
Our feature topic was the growing use of telemedicine, especially in rural areas, to provide improved access and quality of care, especially in rural areas, but in all parts of the country. Patients are increasingly seeking access to providers that utilize telemedicine services, with many reporting that they are willing to change primary care physicians and specialists in order to obtain such services. Several large health systems, such as Ascension, New York Presbyterian, and Providence, are spending significant resources on establishing sophisticated telemedicine access, and many are emphasizing telemedicine to serve rural areas. This program featured comments by several telemedicine experts, including Scott Mason of SKM Enterprises, who are closely following these developments and their implications for patients, physicians, and hospital systems. Telemedicine is a topic we have followed regularly in our group, and is one that requires frequent revisiting due to rapidly changing technologies and developments. We also had Kristine Henderson, VP of Virtual Care and Innovation at Ascension, Phil Cooke of Telesis Partners, Joyce Hunter of Vulcan Enterprises, and Richard Anderson, Chief, Financial Operations Branch Loan Origination and Approval Division, Telecommunications Program, Rural Utilities Service at the United State Department of Agriculture who provided some government perspective.