Cisco, the West Coast District Health Board (DHB) and Gen-i have announced an agreement to deliver the first global trial of Cisco HealthPresence between two organisations, Buller Health, in Westport, and Grey Base Hospital, in Greymouth.
HealthPresence provides a "face to face" experience for patients and caregivers who may be hundreds of kilometres apart by combining video, audio and call-centre technology over a secure network, a statement released today says.
The solution integrates with medical equipment, such as stethoscopes and otoscopes, and can monitor vital signs, for example, blood pressure, temperature and pulse. An attendant in Westport will assist the patient and operate the medical devices on behalf of the remotely located medical practitioner at Grey Base Hospital.
Dr David Galler, principal medical advisor at Ministry of Health, says: “There is huge potential to integrate front line services with the expertise of a multidisciplinary team. This pilot will help us better understand how to deliver the benefits to patients.”
The use of the technology will allow patients to be assessed by specialists without the need to travel, reducing patient transfers and related travel costs.
“We envisage that this will provide backup support for existing services at Buller and enable good collaboration between health professionals at both sites," says Dr Rodger Mills, the head of Emergency Department at Grey Base Hospital.