By: Beau Boughamer
The Contra Costa Times and other California newspapers ran a story about Open Door Community Health Centers, which hosted one of four national telemedicine conferences. The piece also highlighted the role of the Central Valley Health Network.
The conference – funded by the California Healthcare Foundation – was a part of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ Health Resources and Services Administration, efforts to promote the widespread availability and use of digital networks to improve access to health care services for people who are uninsured or living in rural areas. Other conferences are covering topics such as electronic health records and clinical alerts and reminders.
Open Door’s Telehealth and Visiting Specialist Center has been in operation since 2006.
“For those things that we can’t find in our community, we are linked in,” said Herrman Spetzler, Open Door’s chief executive officer.
Sean Folweiler, a clinical application specialist for the Central Valley Health Network — a health care consortium serving 21 counties stretching from Yuba City to San Bernadino — said he attended the conference to learn how to implement a telemedicine system within their consortium. The network already has a video- conferencing network in place, but it is mainly used for administration purposes such as meetings or training.
“We’re working to expand it to be able to do telemedicine in rural areas or even in urban areas,” he said.