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NZ Hospitals to Use Mobile Video Conferencing
Source: futuregov.asia
Source Date: Friday, September 30, 2011
Country: New Zealand
Created: Oct 11, 2011

Grey Base Hospital, Christchurch will be the first in the country to use mobile video conferencing carts, enabling doctors to do virtual rounds in checking hospital patients.

The initiative is part of a wider telemedicine initiative by the West Coast and Canterbury district health boards, in which hospitals and health clinics have been fitted out with video conferencing equipment so health professionals can conduct virtual clinics and consult with colleagues in the South Island.

According to Associate Professor Michael Sullivan, clinical leader of the telemedicine initiative, “The key uses of the equipment so far have been in pediatrics, for virtual clinics, and for cancer care, to assess patients undergoing chemotherapy.”

“We’re seeking feedback from the patients as to how they see it as a clinical experience. So far, anecdotally, their responses are very supportive.”

Telemedicine has been singled out as a technology that will benefit from the ultrafast broadband rollout. Sullivan said the challenge now for the district health boards would be to integrate and support the use of telemedicine in day-to-day practice.

Telehealth equipment had been installed at sites in Westport, Greymouth, Reefton, Hokitika and in five rural health clinics in South Westland, including Haast, Hari Hari and Franz Josef.
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