Tampa General Hospital, OnMed partner for new telemedicine stations

OnMed's stations offer high definition video and audio capabilities, which allow for real-time consultations with a doctor or advanced practice provider.
By Nathan Eddy
11:44 AM

(Photo: TGH.org)

Florida's Tampa General Hospital has teamed up with healthcare technology company OnMed to deploy new telemedicine stations deployed inside the facility.

WHY IT MATTERS
The OnMed Station is designed to provide virtual life-sized consultations with physicians and automated pharmaceutical services, and is the result of more than six years of development by the Florida-based startup.

The initial deployment of the stations is part of the hospital's team member health plan, available to staff members only – it was not clear when, or if, the stations would be opened up for patient use.

OnMed's stations offer high definition video and audio capabilities, which allow for real-time consultations with a doctor or advanced practice provider.

The stations can take height, weight and body mass index measurements, as well as readings of blood pressure, respiration and blood oxygen saturation

Other capabilities include thermal imaging to read body temperature and diagnose infection, the ability to dispense hundreds of common medications, and HD audio and visual inspection of vitals.

In an effort to provide patient comfort, privacy, health and security, the stations also boast features such as privacy glass and high-output ultraviolet surface and air sanitization, which eliminate pathogens after every patient visit.

The stations have biometric security features with multi-factor authentication for pharmacy/vault access with code and key locks, a retractable armrest and seat, and a payment system.

To aid in record keeping, the stations give patients the option to securely transmit results to primary care physicians, and can also provide paper prescriptions, e-prescriptions to preferred pharmacies, as well as referrals and self-service lab kits for diagnostic testing.

THE LARGER TREND
The hospital is no stranger to cutting-edge innovations: Last year it entered into a partnership with GE Healthcare to set up an artificial intelligence-driven care coordination center designed to harmonize patient safety and quality improvement initiatives.

The 9,000-square-foot command center, which features 20 artificial intelligence apps, video walls with 38 large screens, 32 work stations, multiple computer systems, went online in August.

Staff from various departments are able to monitor data to help with initiatives such as improving patient transports, reducing patient wait times, speeding the discharge process and more.

ON THE RECORD
"Following the initial placement, Tampa General Hospital is developing a strategy to deploy multiple stations throughout the community," said Adam Smith, senior vice president of ambulatory services for Tampa General Hospital.

"For example, we are looking to partner with OnMed to place this innovative health technology station in various public consumer facing areas, such as local schools and airports. Right now, we are committed to prioritizing the wellness of our own Team Members by providing them access to instant care, when they need it."

"We believe telehealth is the future, but in order to see long-term success, it has to go beyond a phone call with a doctor," added Austin White, president and CEO of OnMed.

Nathan Eddy is a healthcare and technology freelancer based in Berlin.
Email the writer: nathaneddy@gmail.com
Twitter: @dropdeaded209