Share and Enjoy

  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • LinkedIn
  • StumbleUpon
  • Add to favorites
  • Email
  • RSS

telehealth

 

MEW recently wrote about Telehealth (virtual health services) in Missouri and a school program in Indiana using virtual doctors to assess students’ health.  Concerns about Telehealth in schools were:

 

According to the PresenceLearning press release celebrating the passage of MO SB579 (Medicaid reimbursement for related services to students provided by virtual medical services), the legislation will allow access to special needs students who may not have had the services available to them in their district.  From a July 2016 press release, PresenceLearning Doubles its Number of Live, Online Special Education Assessments Conducted in the 2015-16 School Year, which offers more detail on assessments and programs for special needs students:

PresenceLearning currently offers a wide range of assessments in a variety of languages for speech-language, occupational therapy, and behavior and mental health, including: articulation; expressive and receptive language; fluency and pragmatics; fine motor, visual motor, and sensory integration; emotional disturbance; or other health impairment. Assessments for 504 eligibility, intervention planning, and pre-referral for at-risk students can also be performed by online clinicians. In addition, PresenceLearning plans to offer a complete range of psychoeducational assessments—including ability and achievement assessments—in the 2016-2017 school year.

Questions: Will the parents of a child receiving 504 services be able to speak with the virtual clinician at an IEP meeting?  What occurs if the parents disagree with the assessments produced by the virtual clinicians?  Do the parents know who/what has access to their child’s IEP information, diagnosis, and treatment plan?

 

Virtual medicine techniques will soon be used for autistic, asthmatic, behaviorally challenged, and diabetic children in Virginia.  From Health System Makes Telehealth Links to Schools in Bland County, Martinsville:

 

Supported by a four-year, $1.1 million grant from the federal Health Resources and Services Administration, the health centers are slated to open in January at Bland County Elementary School and Bland County High School. Additional centers are scheduled to open in Martinsville at Albert Harris Elementary School and Martinsville High School during the 2017-18 school year.

Primary care will be provided at the school health centers through the Bland County Medical Clinic and the Martinsville Henry County Coalition for Health and Wellness, with specialty care provided by UVA and the Virginia Institute of Autism through secure telehealth connections.

Primary care will be provided at the school health centers through the Bland County Medical Clinic and the Martinsville Henry County Coalition for Health and Wellness, with specialty care provided by UVA and the Virginia Institute of Autism through secure telehealth connections.

“We hope to improve access to coordinated primary care, help parents and school personnel assist children with special health care needs and help spark a demonstrable improvement in healthy behaviors related to fitness, nutrition and oral health,” said Kathy Wibberly, director of the Mid-Atlantic Telehealth Resource Center, which is based at UVA’s telehealth center.

One aim of the school health centers is to create “virtual care teams” for children with special care needs, including students with autism, asthma, diabetes and behavioral health conditions.

“We want to facilitate communication between parents, primary care providers, classroom teachers and specialty care providers,” Wibberly said.

Care teams will have several secure, private tools to communicate. These will include videoconferencing and text messaging as well as devices that can transmit patient data, such as heart and lung sounds, along with images from inside the ear and throat.

Along with team members from UVA, the Virginia Institute of Autism, the four schools, Bland County Medical Clinic and the Martinsville Henry County Coalition for Health and Wellness, care teams will also include staff from the Mount Rogers Community Services Board and Piedmont Community Services.

“As the prevalence of autism has grown dramatically in the last decade, rural communities have had serious challenges addressing the need,” said Ethan Long, executive director for the Virginia Institute of Autism. “By leveraging our partnership with UVA’s Telemedicine division, we’re able to extend our reach and provide high-quality, evidence-based services to places that have never had access to that level of care and support.”

The school health centers will also encourage healthy lifestyle choices by making health education into a game, using mobile devices and apps that mix entertainment, friendly competition, education and health monitoring.

“The Pokémon Go craze is one example of how games can incentivize fitness,” Wibberly said.

The partners will collect data on how the school health centers are impacting students’ health, with the potential to expand the project to more schools.

 

Anybody else concerned about the number of partners involved in data transactions of student information?  It’s not just health organizations, community organizations and school districts tracking student data, it includes companies such as Google when kids use apps such as PokemonGo.  Anyone else concerned about ‘secure’ transactions of PII?   Anyone else concerned that very personal information on some of the most vulnerable children will be transmitted to Federal agencies and unknown third parties?  How accessible will these virtual clinicians be to parents?  Has there been any legislation drafted by any state anywhere protecting this data?

 

(More on Pokemon Go and why your children should not use it may be found here and here.)

Gretchen Logue

Pinterest