The Blog

VSee, Dell, & UMMC Telehealth Bring Neurologists To High School Football Games

school telehealth

Christy Lewis Photography in Marion

Telehealth is rapidly proving its worth as way of broadening access to healthcare. Now, an innovative coalition of medical providers, technology companies and the National Federation of State High School Associations (NFHS) is using telemedicine to test a new way of caring for Mississippi football players who experience concussive injuries: providing telehealth concussion evaluations right on the game field.

Telehealth concussion evaluations to help high school football players

University of Mississippi Medical Center (UMMC) will lead the study, using technology from Dell and VSee to determine the usefulness of providing on-the-spot concussion evaluations for high school football players who are injured on the playing field. The study looks at the use of video conferencing to provide concussion evaluation by physicians for football players at 10 to 20 high schools in Mississippi during the 2015 football season. These sites will cover urban, suburban and rural locations to ensure a diverse sample during the pilot project. The pilot will begin on August 21, 2015, and the technology will be available to the selected schools through the duration of their seasons.

In partnership with VSee, Dell will offer a low cost, HIPAA-compliant, video telemedicine platform with VSee software, which can connect remote physicians with patients anywhere in the world via the Internet. In this study, the system will connect a remote physician with an athlete on the field for the concussion consult. Dell will provide Windows tablets with built-in high-definition cameras, to facilitate the video consult.

At the end of the football season, UMMC’s Center for Telehealth will provide metrics to the NFHS to show how often the system was used and to measure the effectiveness of on-field telehealth concussion evaluations by a physician. The NFHS is interested in scaling and replicating this program broadly, so a thorough evaluation of the program will help the group determine if this technology can improve the way coaches and other athletic officials respond to concussive injuries. Results from the study are expected to be available during the first half of 2016.

Head injury is common among high school football players

Renee Fernandes/NATA Aaron Ellis, MEd, ATC, LAT, the athletic trainer at Kimball High School in Dallas, TX helps kids on the field and on the sidelines during the football team's opening game.

Renee Fernandes/NATA
Aaron Ellis, MEd, ATC, LAT, the athletic trainer at Kimball High School in Dallas, TX helps kids on the field and on the sidelines during the football team’s opening game.

The NFHS study will address a serious issue in high school football. According to the American Association of Neurological Surgeons, “more than 300,000 sports-related concussions occur annually in the U.S., and the likelihood of suffering a concussion while playing a contact sport is estimated to be as high as 19 percent per year of play. More than 62,000 concussions are sustained each year in high school contact sports, and among college football players, 34 percent have had one concussion, and 20 percent have endured multiple concussions.”

A rare but often fatal condition, second impact syndrome, can occur when an athlete suffers a second concussion before fully healing from a previous concussion. This is why immediate evaluation is so important. If a concussion diagnosis is missed, and the athlete continues to play, a second concussion could prove catastrophic.

If the study shows better outcomes for injured student athletes who receive immediate evaluation, the technology may see widespread use in other sports venues. Many schools currently rely on local volunteer physicians for on-the-field care, which is a less-than-ideal situation because volunteers may not always be available when needed, or they might lack the needed expertise in concussion evaluation. This is especially true in small towns with limited medical resources.

For volunteer physicians who are willing to be at the game but don’t have expertise in sports-related injuries, the ability to consult, on the spot, with a knowledgeable colleague, would no doubt be welcome. And for coaches who have no physician on the field, a virtual consult via telehealth technology could lead to better decisions about when to let a student play and when to keep the athlete off the field. And while concussions are the number one concern, telehealth consults could be used to evaluate a wide variety of other common injuries, including heat stroke, which has also claimed the lives of young athletes.

Original post on Dell Blog here, by Fadesola Adetosoye – Telehealth & Telemedicine Practice Lead, Dell Healthcare & Life Sciences

 

MDLIVE Joins Other Telemedicine Players in 50M Round of Funding

MDLIVE, the telehealth platform used by Walgreens and Cigna, has raised $50 million in a recent round of funding, bringing it to a total of $74 million. The MDLIVE investment came from private equity firm Bedford Funding which also funds Voalte. Last fall MDLIVE broadened its reach by acquiring Breakthrough Behavioral, a leading provider of online mental health services, which had already raised $5.9 million on its own. Breakthrough has been offering it services since 2009 and serves 12 states.

This follows a wave of telehealth funding, including an $80 million Series C by Boston-based American Well in December 2014, a $50 million by Dallas-based Teladoc in September 2014,  a $50 million in Series B funding by the Dr.-Phil-supported Doctor on Demand in June 2015, and $1.7 million by 1DocWay for telepsychiatry networks in July 2015.

In fact, digital health funding is having another exciting year.  Last year, investors blew an unprecedented $4 billion on digital health, up $2.2 billion from 2013 and are projected to spend $6.5 billion by 2017.

Experts say that doctor consultations over video will continue to increase by 20 percent per year, eventually surpassing 150 million in 2020. In light of this, all eyes are glued on Teladoc which announced its decision to go public earlier this year.

VSee provides HIPAA-secure video chat for MDLIVE, as well as its mobile app, and we’re super excited to be along for the ride.

 

VSee Tip for Windows – Adding Contacts (after July 7, 2015)

Say good-bye to “Add Contact” in your menu (VSee Windows users).
VSee’s new streamlined Windows address book makes it easier to search and add contacts to your contact list.

Just search for the contact you want to add in the search bar. If they are already a VSee user, they will appear in your address book. You can then either send them a quick chat or add them to your contact list right from the address book.

VSee add contact

If they are not an existing VSee user, click the “Invite to VSee” button to send them an invite.

invite_contact

To send multiple invites, go to the address book, click Add–>Invite to VSee. In both cases, a separate browser window will pop up and give you the option to send invites directly or copy and paste your open URL link.

VSee invite contacts

Genesis TPM Brings Video Consultations to Chronic Condition Management

chronic care condition managementGenesis Total Patient Management (TPM) is a proven chronic condition management tool that allows patients and providers to work together to manage chronic conditions such as asthma, diabetes, PT/INR (Management of Blood), hypertension, and obesity. Now, Genesis TPM has extended its services by partnering with VSee to provide telemedicine.

With VSee telemedicine, Genesis TPM can easily connect patients and providers for live video consultations. Together they can review the patient’s data face-to-face and come up with a plan to manage the chronic condition. Patients can also connect to a care team member if anything comes up.

Of course, that’s just one part of Genesis TPM. Their interactive online portal lets patients track their health data, upload personal medical records information, and securely invite all their caregivers to participate in their progress. It brings together school nurses, caregivers, and family members, who can receive alerts and updates on a patient’s condition. Participants also have access to home charts, caregiver notes, health plans, prescriptions, and educational links. There is even a secure Social Medical Network where patients can get support from other members sharing common issues.

Some Ugly Chronic Condition Statistics

According to the CDC, about half of all adults in the United States have a chronic health condition, such as heart disease, diabetes, arthritis, asthma and obesity, and 1 in 3 have multiple conditions. Estimates of US health spending place direct costs at 176 billion for diagnosed diabetes alone. Moreover, research shows that about 50 percent of medications for chronic disease are not taken by patients as prescribed, leading to approximately 125,000 deaths and at least 10 percent of hospitalizations.

The good news is that there are lots of things we can do to prevent and lower chronic condition incidences, and chronic condition management portals like Genesis TPM play a critical role in this, leading to less health spending and improving the lives of those with chronic conditions.

Why Genesis TPM Works

Genesis Total Patient Management

For geriatrician Dr. Diane Clarke, Genesis TPM has made all the difference both for her and her patients. She loves the real-time data she receives with Genesis. It allows her to see if a patient is taking his or her medication, how he or she is feeling, and what diagnostic test has been done by other providers. It also lets her learn instantly about something in the immediate environment which is affecting a patient’s health, rather than hearing about it 2 weeks later…when a patient is in the hospital.

Another important aspect of Genesis is much-needed patient education. A study from Preventing Chronic Disease Journal found that patients receive education about how to manage their conditions in less than 50 percent of outpatient visits. The Genesis Learning Library is a ready-to-go resource for patients and providers. In addition, patients and caregivers can upload videos and other materials to share with each other for a customized education.

Research also supports the effectiveness of patient self-management in improving outcomes for people with chronic diseases. Because the portal empowers patients to control their own data and collaborate with caregivers. Genesis can say with confidence that it provides a truly evidence-based and patient-centered tool.  Dr. Clarke says, “I have found that Genesis TPM has provided a means of giving my patients more contact with me and a sense of decreased anxiety, since they are being provided with a means of doing something for themselves.”

With the current reimbursement CPT Codes, Genesis TPM can even provide a valuable source of revenue for participating caregivers.

The good people at Genesis TPM have given rave reviews to VSee for the quality of our video. Likewise, the VSee team is proud to be part of this much-needed solution.

VSee New Release 707 – Improved Low Bandwidth Video

VSee api update releaseWe’re still focused on giving you the best low-bandwidth video conference with this new VSee release. We’ve also improved the iOS experience with in-app registration, landscape orientation and more! Please make sure your VSee is updated to the latest versions:

  • Windows version 15.0.0.707 (21214)
  • Mac version 3.0 (21214)
  • iPad 3.2 (21221)
  • iPhone  1.8 (21221)
  • Android 1.4 (21275)

 

Android, iPad, iPhone, Mac and Windows:

  1. Improved video quality auto-adjustment for low bandwidth networks.
  2. Added a dial-out tone and changed dial tone for receiving calls.
  3. Fixed offline presence bug when calling.

Windows:

  1. New design for VSee address book.
  2. Improved tiling for video windows.
  3. Fixed crash on exit while still searching for a contact.

Mac:

  1. Fixed high video delay during calls over low bandwidth.
  2. Fixed video frame rates not changing with the video settings.
  3. Fixed aux cam positioning during call.
  4. Fixed app sharing for secondary monitors.
  5. Fixed unable to re-login if group chat was opened previously.

iPad and iPhone:

  1. Added in-app registration.
  2. Fixed badge numbers for new messages.
  3. Added ability to drag and drop video window position for group calls.
  4. Added UI support for large text size.
  5. Fixed position of popover settings when switching orientation.
  6. Fixed crash when navigating between call and chat view.
  7. Added landscape support for iPhone.
  8. Fixed various views and navigation bugs between menu items.
  9. Fixed inactive user disappearing when active user is removed during a group call.
  10. Improved background ring tone – now plays for 30 seconds when app is in the background.
  11. Improved UI where notifications redirect to the correct view when app is opened.

 Android:

  1. Removed wrong warnings on video view and login view.

– – – – – – – – – – – –

To see if you are on the latest version of VSee:

Windows  – Click the Help icon in the address book –>select “About VSee…” and see if it is the newest version. VSee will download the newest client for you (which will show as a checkmark in task tray icon). Simply restart the program to use the updated VSee.

Mac  – Click “VSee” top menu and choose “check for updates.”

Please contact VSee support team if you have any problems, questions, or suggestions!