|[January 23, 2014]
Gov. Bryant Partners with UMMC, GE Healthcare, Intel-GE Care Innovations™, North Sunflower Medical Center and C Spire to launch diabetes telehealth network
JACKSON, Miss. --(Business Wire)--
Mississippi faces a growing diabetes crisis, ranking second among all
states nationwide in disease prevalence with more than 373,000 adults in
the state living with some form of diabetes. In an effort to address
this problem, Gov. Phil Bryant has joined with the University of
Mississippi Medical Center (UMMC), North Sunflower Medical Center
(NSMC), GE Healthcare, Intel (News - Alert)-GE Care Innovations and C Spire to offer
people with diabetes more consistent and timely access to clinicians
through the use of telehealth technology in their homes.
"This revolutionary telehealth effort will deliver top-notch medical
care to patients in one of Mississippi's most medically underserved
areas, providing a new lifeline for health and disease management," Gov.
Phil Bryant said. "Innovations like this also spur further growth and
economic benefit in the medical industry. I thank Dr. Henderson and all
of the partners for working to make this program a reality."
The Diabetes Telehealth Network will begin recruiting patients this
spring in the Mississippi Delta to participate in an 18-month remote
care management program, a concept which fuses technology with UMMC
specialists to improve patient outcomes in a historically underserved
area of the state. The program - a first of its kind nationally - is
designed to improve the health of participants while also reducing the
total cost of care.
In 2010, 12.1 percent of adults in the Mississippi Delta, among the more
underserved and impoverished regions in the nation, reported being
diagnosed with type 2 diabetes and 293 died from complications related
to the disease. In 2012, diabetic medical expenses in Mississippi
totaled $2.74 billion, according to the American Diabetes Association.
"We know that diabetes is one of the foremost chronic diseases in
Mississippi," said Dr. Kristi Henderson, director of telehealth at UMMC.
"This program can help improve care coordination and strengthen
connections between clinicians and patients, and will serve as a proof
of concept as we look to expand this model geographically and to other
diseases. Sunflower County has been a pioneer with us for telehealth and
often is one of our primary sites in starting up new specialties."
UMMC's Center for Telehealth offers a growing list of specialty services
including cardiology, dermatology, pediatrics, emergency medicine and
stroke through audio/visual link-ups at clinics and hospitals across the
state. The Diabetes Telehealth Network will take that concept one step
further by putting that technology in the hands of the patients
themselves in the form of Internet-capable tablets equipped with the
Care Innovations™ Guide platform.
The Care Innovations™Guide platform enables health-care providers to
offer a clinically driven, fully integrated remote care management
solution for populations with chronic conditions. The project will
recruit up to 200 patients in Sunflower County, MS, who will use Care
Innovations technology to share health data, such as weight, blood
pressure, and glucose levels, daily with clinicians.
The daily information provided by patients gives clinicians a much more
complete view of a patient's health status. With this information,
clinicians can easily adjust medical care, as well as schedule phone
calls or video chats with patients as necessary.
This type of "just-in-time" education can help avoid serious
complications as well as develop long-lasting behavioral change.
Clinicians also can see a snapshot of all patients under their care to
help them better understand which patients need immediate support,
making them more efficient and proactive. By using specialized tablet
computers with mobile broadband access and cutting edge telehealth, the
program is able to bring the resources and expertise of the state's only
academic medical center, UMMC, to citizens of rural Mississippi, rather
than requiring them to travel to UMMC.
"We will bring UMMC's specialists, including the pharmacist, the
diabetic educator, the nurse, the endocrinologist and the
ophthalmologist, to the Mississippi Delta through this technology"
Henderson said. "We will be able to provide interactive video consults,
deliver patient education and engage with the patient daily to meet
their needs. Until now, this type of coordinated care that engages the
patient in their home setting was simply not an option."
With a telehealth relationship already in place at North Sunflower
Medical Center, Henderson said the project came together with the
technological and telecommunications resource support of Gov. Bryant's
office, GE Healthcare, Care Innovations and C Spire.
"North Sunflower Medical Center is excited and pleased to have been
chosen for the opportunity to partner with the Governor's office, C
Spire, GE, Care Innovations and UMMC on the Mississippi Diabetes
Telehealth pilot project," said NSMC Executive Director Billy Marlow.
"We wholeheartedly support the use of the latest technology in aiding
our patient-centered, team approach to controlling diabetes in the
"The governor and UMMC should be commended for their investment in a new
model of clinical care that has delivered positive results and shown
value in supporting management of chronic conditions," said Sean
Slovenski, CEO of Care Innovations. "Care Innovations is honored to have
been chosen for this initiative, which we believe has the potential to
transform care delivery in a way that solves real problems."
"Extending world class care into the home for people in rural
Mississippi and beyond who daily deal with the challenges of diabetes
and other chronic conditions is a goal that clinicians, policy-makers,
industry and patients can all rally behind," said Marcelo Mosci,
president and CEO of GE Healthcare, US and Canada. "We are excited to
help launch this innovative program alongside Governor Bryant, and we
are confident that efforts like this will be vital in expanding access
to quality healthcare for more people."
"We're pleased to be involved in an innovative pilot program that
promises to make a real difference in the lives of Mississippians who
are dealing with the reality of this chronic disease every day," said Hu
Meena, president and CEO of C Spire. "Combining the power of our
high-speed mobile broadband communications network with technology
solutions from Care Innovations to link specialists at UMMC and patients
in new ways will help us deliver more connected, collaborative and
The University of Mississippi Medical Center, located in Jackson, is the
state's only academic medical center. UMMC encompasses five health
science schools, including medicine, nursing, health related
professions, dentistry and graduate studies, as well as the site where
University of Mississippi pharmacy students do their clinical training.
The Medical Center's health-care enterprise includes five hospitals in
the University Hospitals and Health System, and University Physicians,
the faculty group practice. The Medical Center's threefold mission is to
educate tomorrow's health-care professionals, conduct innovative
research to improve human health, and to provide the highest quality
care available to the state's population. A major goal of the Medical
Center is the improvement of the health of Mississippians and the
elimination of health disparities. For more information, contact the
Division of Public Affairs at 601-984-1100 or visit us on the Web at umc.edu/publicaffairs.
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