We Could Save More Lives in Rural Arizona

SB1089 creates affordable care options, meaning more care for more people.


Telemedicine Will Change Healthcare in Arizona

Everyday, rural Arizonans avoid medical
help for fear of unknown costs & travel.
but
Telemedicine decreases medical costs dramatically and transparently it also allows rural patients to get care in their community or home.
and
SB1089 would expand telemedicine
options to all insured services.

Tell AZ Leadership to Vote for Telemedicine Now


Wait, what is Telemedicine?
Simply, it’s getting medical services via video or phone or some other electronic means, from someone who isn’t in the room with you. Telemedicine is effective because it means anyone can take advantage of all the medical expertise outside of your community, rather than just the best your community has to offer. In plenty of rural areas, there isn’t enough medical staff to help everyone, and even in bigger communities, telemedicine may mean faster access or expanded access to help.

Why Should I Care About Telemedicine?
Even when insured, many people go without care because they simply can’t predict the costs of their care. Even worse, in rural areas, it often means traveling outside your community, which compounds costs by requiring transportation, lodging, etc. By providing care in the communities that need it via video, phone, or internet app, patients are more likely to be able to stay in their communities, meaning lower predictable costs. It also means access to specialists your community may not have, increasing your access to care, and access to many more caregivers, meaning faster care.

I don’t live in Rural Arizona, why Should I care?
Because the same law will allow urban/suburban patients access to these same telemedicine services, increasing options and reducing costs.


Doing nothing means patients will continue to avoid care due to unpredictable costs and travel, and long wait times- act now.

On January 16, 2019, Senate Bill 1089 was introduced into legislation seeking expanded access to telemedicine services across Arizona. In recent history, Arizona’s statutory list of telemedicine services private insurers must cover has grown; however, the current law limits telemedicine coverage to 10 specialties. With the proposed legislation, any healthcare service covered in-person by a commercial insurer will also be covered when provided through telemedicine.

Telemedicine – or telehealth – is the process by which patients can receive medical information and care through various electronic means from a remote practitioner, making medical and clinical expertise more convenient and accessible than ever before. It also allows patients to access specialty services that that otherwise would not be offered in their community.

Telemedicine coverage of all health services by commercial insurers, known as ‘full telemedicine parity,’ exists in at least 23 other states and Washington, DC, and helps to bring critical health care resources to more communities, particularly in rural areas.

 


A Q&A with The Mayo Clinic’s Bart Demaerschalk, M.D. (Part 2)

Telemedicine in Arizona has a long history. AZHHA recently sat down with The Mayo Clinic’s Bart Demaerschalk, M.D., Medical Director for Synchronous Services, Center for Connected Care, which partners with hospitals across Arizona to provide the highest quality care for patients via telemedicine, and in particular, telestroke. This is the second of a two-part blog.…

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A Q&A with The Mayo Clinic’s Bart Demaerschalk, M.D. (Part 1)

Telemedicine in Arizona has a long history. AZHHA recently sat down with The Mayo Clinic’s Bart Demaerschalk, M.D., Medical Director for Synchronous Services, Center for Connected Care, which partners with hospitals across Arizona to provide the highest quality care for patients via telemedicine, and in particular, telestroke. This is the first of a two-part blog.…

Read More...


Havasu Regional Medical Center Changes Healthcare with Telemedicine

Havasu Regional Medical Center, located in Lake Havasu City in Western Arizona, had two problems that are not uncommon to rural medical centers: there was a shortage of critical care trained physicians to work in their Intensive Care Unit (ICU), and due to the lack of neurologists in the area, they were ill-equipped to quickly…

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Yavapai Regional Medical Center Brings Telemedicine to Patients — and Their Own Employees

Telemedicine has become a vital tool to deliver timely and effective medical care, particularly in rural areas. One hospital in Arizona, Yavapai Regional Medical Center, is using telemedicine to improve patient satisfaction and treat conditions that would otherwise need the services of a “big-city” hospital two hours away. How is telemedicine being used in the hospital?…

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Rural, Inpatient Dialysis is the Telemedicine Trifecta: Improving Access, Improving Outcomes and Saving Millions

Imagine you are one of the nearly half million Americans receiving dialysis, but you live in Show Low, AZ, and have to travel hundreds of miles and over six hours roundtrip to Phoenix to receive this life-saving treatment – not just once but multiple times per week potentially for years as you wait for a kidney transplant.

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