6 min read

Top 5 Reasons Why HIPAA Compliance Matters in Telehealth

By Justin Baker on Sep 18, 2020

While the world has dealt with the far-reaching impacts of COVID-19, the healthcare community has had to deal with many unique challenges. Coming up with and implementing procedures to protect both patients and staff from possible exposure to the virus is a tricky process, especially when in some locations, hospitals have also been dealing with patient surges. Keeping up with routine scheduled visits and elective procedures then becomes even more difficult. As a result, telemedicine has become commonly used for patient care visits and follow up appointments. 

Topics: Telemedicine COVID-19 Telehealth HIPAA
3 min read

Upcoming Webinar: 911-Initiated Telemedicine [By Colorado Springs, CO Clinical Leaders]

By Nathan Williams on Sep 02, 2020

In the largest pandemic of our lifetime, learn how clinical leaders in Colorado Springs, CO, are using mobile technology to not only manage the COVID-19 crisis, but also lay the foundation for the new reality of EMS, including 911-initiated telemedicine, Mobile Integrated Healthcare, Community Paramedicine, and telehealth. For the first time ever, the presenters will outline their modernized management system and share case studies and key takeaways that will help you improve patient care, upgrade team communication, reduce cost of care, and increase EMS agency and hospital revenue. Clinicians and thought leaders are creating a new path forward, based around the HIPAA-compliant, secure, mobile-first telehealth communication platform Pulsara.

What: 911-Initiated Telemedicine: How Colorado Springs, CO, Clinical Leaders Are Revolutionizing Emergency Medicine via Mobile Technology

When: Tuesday, Sept 8, 2020 | 1:00 pm EST /  12:00 pm CT / 11:00 am MT / 10:00 am PT

HowSIGN UP HERE

Keep reading to learn more!

Topics: EMS Telemedicine Community Paramedicine Mobile Integrated Health Telehealth
2 min read

Better Stroke Care for NY Mount St. Mary's Hospital

By Team Pulsara on Aug 14, 2020

New York Hospital Improves Communication and Door-to-Needle Times with Pulsara

Just before the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, care teams at Mount St. Mary’s Hospital in Lewiston, New York realized that they needed a better way to communicate. According to an article published recently in a local Lewiston news source, Mount St. Mary’s chose to adopt Pulsara in order to open better lines of communication between EMS and emergency department staff.

Pulsara is a mobile-first telehealth and communication platform that connects teams across organizations. Through the use of mobile technology, Pulsara allows every member of the care team —from medics to nurses to physicians — to communicate on one dedicated channel for each patient. And for stroke patients at Mount St. Mary’s Regional Stroke Center, more efficient care team communication can have a major impact.

Topics: Stroke Communication Telemedicine Technology Connected Teams Interoperability Client Success
6 min read

Finding a Next-Generation Telehealth Plan of Action for Your Hospital [Part 2]

By Tim Hakamaki on Aug 03, 2020

This is part 2 of our 5-part blog series based on the webinar “The Next-Gen Communication and Telehealth Plan of Action for Your Hospital.” Check out part 1 here. Watch the corresponding section of the webinar below, or listen to the full webinar here. 

Over the last four months, COVID-19 has forever changed the landscape of healthcare. Telehealth has experienced explosive growth since March, creating groundbreaking changes in telemedicine regulations and reimbursement opportunities. Prior to four months ago, only a small minority of systems utilized telehealth in beyond three to five percent of their appointments. Since the start of COVID-19, telehealth has grown to millions of claims in less than a few months. According to a published stat, the number of Medicare beneficiaries using telehealth services during the pandemic increased 11,700%. 

Looking at a graph of telehealth’s "hockey stick" growth is astonishing. For many years, there was no substantial change. March 2020 marks the shift between the blue and red growth markers. Telehealth shot from near non-existence to millions of claims practically overnight. 

Topics: Communication Telemedicine COVID-19 Telehealth Reimbursement
5 min read

Finding a Next-Generation Telehealth Plan of Action for Your Hospital [Part 1]

By James Woodson, MD on Jul 24, 2020

This 5-part blog series is based on the webinar “The Next-Gen Communication and Telehealth Plan of Action for Your Hospital.” Watch the corresponding section of the webinar below, or listen to the full webinar here. 

Telehealth and telemedicine have gone through dramatic changes over the last four months, far more than many of us dreamed possible. Regulations and reimbursement are evolving rapidly, which has opened up the door to many new opportunities for using telehealth. Telehealth is helping us improve both the quality and the value of the care that we deliver to our communities. 

However, all this change will almost certainly have wide-reaching implications for your health system, especially in the acute care space. Over the next five posts in this series, we’ll discuss the rapidly shifting landscapes of telehealth regulations and reimbursement and how you can navigate them. We’ll also dive into some of the questions surrounding how to best leverage telehealth in the acute care space.

Topics: Communication Telemedicine COVID-19 Telehealth Reimbursement
2 min read

How Telemedicine Can Help in Rural Healthcare

By Wes Wood on Jul 22, 2020

I grew up and lived most of my life in a very rural area. The majority of my EMS and ED nursing experience comes from rural settings, including a few years in a small critical access hospital. I was the only nurse in the 5-bed ER on night shift. We even locked all the doors to the hospital, and if someone presented to the ER for care, they had to ring a doorbell so I could let them in. No really—we did.

My, how times have changed with technology and medical advances. The recent COVID-19 crisis has affected virtually every healthcare professional in some form or fashion, and has potentially changed healthcare forever. Telemedicine has emerged to the forefront as a valuable option for providing care: both acute and chronic, in person, and remote. It’s gone from being a distant future option hidden behind miles of red tape to being one of the hottest topics in healthcare today.

Topics: Communication Telemedicine Technology Telehealth
4 min read

Why Now is the Time to Secure A Telehealth Solution for Your Care Team

By Kinsie Clarkson on Jul 15, 2020

As the summer progresses, more and more cities are experiencing a spike in their numbers of COVID-19 cases. The second wave of the coronavirus is closing in, which means that the remainder of this summer is vital. Now is the time to prepare for the challenges of the months ahead.

A new telehealth solution is an excellent way to plan ahead. Telehealth can greatly expand patient access to essential health services, ensuring that providers can continue to give them high quality care from a distance. Recently, the CDC came out with an article explaining how a secure telehealth solution can set a medical practice up for the best possible results in mitigating the spread of COVID-19.

Topics: Telemedicine COVID-19 Telehealth
5 min read

Phishing and Security Risks in Telehealth and Video Communication

By Kinsie Clarkson on Jul 06, 2020

With the sudden influx of telehealth communication platforms rising to meet needs during COVID-19, barriers to telemedicine have been breaking with record speed. Unfortunately, with the increased use of technology comes increased security risks—risks that leave patient information vulnerable to hackers. 

Since COVID-19, phishing attempts and successes have increased significantly. In mid-April, Google saw more than 18 million daily malware and phishing emails related to COVID-19. The pandemic has changed our relationship with technology and how we operate on a day-to-day basis. Now, fewer people are suspicious about receiving a text that appears to come from a government agency or a trusted healthcare provider. And even in legitimate technological encounters between providers and patients, unsecured information can fall into the wrong hands and give scammers the opportunity to make their phishing messages look more believable. 

Topics: Telemedicine Telehealth HIPAA Security
9 min read

COVID-19 and the Future of Telehealth: A Conversation with Dr. James Woodson

By Kinsie Clarkson on Jul 01, 2020

In late May, Dr. James Woodson, the founder and CEO of Pulsara, sat down with Brian Zimmerman of the Becker’s Healthcare podcast series to discuss how telehealth can improve patient care and protect clinicians during COVID-19 and beyond. During the podcast, Dr. Woodson explains the potential of mobile technology in healthcare communication, how Pulsara streamlines the communication process, and Pulsara's role in the future of telemedicine. Listen to the podcast here, or read the interview below. 

Topics: Telemedicine Technology Innovation Telehealth
3 min read

PRESS RELEASE: Telehealth and Communication Company Pulsara Launches Free Funding Resource to Help Emergency Management, Hospitals, and EMS Find and Secure COVID-19 Funding

By Team Pulsara on Jun 18, 2020

By utilizing a free funding resource, healthcare and public safety organizations can more quickly and easily meet their recovery and preparation goals.

Topics: Press Telemedicine COVID-19 Telehealth
3 min read

Is There an App for That? Why HIPAA Compliance Matters for Healthcare Apps

By Josh Jordan on Jun 05, 2020

These days, many of our most basic tasks and functions happen using the smart device in our pocket. 

“I need a pizza!” 

There is an app for that. 

“I need a new car.” 

There’s an app for that, too. 

In this digital age, we consume vastly increasing amounts of data. If you think about it, we will never again use as little data as we do today. Every day, all around us, we figure out there is an app for pretty close to everything, from scheduling appointments to checking our banking statement to getting a ride across town. While the phrase “there is an app for that” has become something of a cliché, there’s some truth to it.

Topics: Telemedicine Telehealth HIPAA
5 min read

How EMS First Responders Are Embracing Mobile Telehealth Services

By Kinsie Clarkson on Jun 03, 2020

In 2017, a group of doctors and scientists conducted a survey study with paramedics to find out their thoughts on the future of EMS. More specifically, they were interested in finding out what paramedics thought about the possibility of using telemedicine in the back of the ambulance. Would video communication technology be able to help paramedics deliver higher quality care for their patients? Or would it be a time-consuming hindrance?

At the time, using video communication for pre- and out-of-hospital care was still considered a novel idea. Many paramedics expressed that the concept was a new one to them, which possibly accounted for the large number of neutral responses. There were also a number of potential problems with telehealth services that concerned them, including background noise, connection errors, interference with patient care, difficulty in set-up and use, equipment damage, and poor video quality.

Topics: EMS Telemedicine Telehealth
7 min read

How EMS Leaders Are Using Mobile Technology to Manage the COVID-19 Crisis and Beyond: Top Takeaways

By Kinsie Clarkson on May 01, 2020

On April 28th, JEMS Webcasts hosted an enriching webinar featuring a distinguished panel of EMS leaders discussing how their organizations are using mobile technology to manage the COVID-19 pandemic, and how they plan to use those same technologies in the future.

Topics: EMS Telemedicine Technology COVID-19
4 min read

COVID-19 Changed How We View Telemedicine. Here's How to Choose the Right Solution for Your Team

By Kris Kaull on Apr 24, 2020

Why has the healthcare system resisted telemedicine as a solution for so long? 

Telemedicine offers a world of opportunity for innovation and improvement in healthcare communication. Clinicians can use it to assess patients remotely, advise medical care without having to be on-site, and consult with one another to bring patients the highest possible quality in medical care. We rely so heavily on technology in every other area of life, it seems counterintuitive that old, outdated technology dominates the industry where saving time can save lives. 

Up until now, that potential has mostly gone untapped. Why?

Topics: Telemedicine Technology COVID-19
5 min read

5 Ways Telemedicine Can Help Turn the Tide Against COVID-19

By Kinsie Clarkson on Apr 13, 2020

Why did it take a global pandemic to convince healthcare providers to try telemedicine?

Up until last month, telemedicine seemed like a healthcare innovation of the future to many. But now, as we face the fallout of COVID-19, telemedicine is exploding at a rate that was unthinkable only a few months ago. Such dramatic numbers might make us ask why this has taken so long, when the concept of doctors being able to see patients remotely has been around for years.

At the end of 2019, video conferencing platform Zoom had 10 million registered users. In March, that number jumped to 200 million. While a fraction of that number are medical appointments, physicians are seeing record high numbers for virtual appointments. Stanford Health Care is seeing 3,000 patients through televisits each day, an unprecedented 40% of all their clinical visits. That’s 50 times higher than in previous months. Massachusetts General Hospital has seen their number of virtual appointments multiply 10 to 20 times in the last few weeks.

Topics: Telemedicine Technology
18 min read

10 Things EMS Providers Need to Know About Telemedicine

By Team Pulsara on Sep 20, 2019

Lessons learned from Houston’s ETHAN program can help your agency design, launch and manage a telemedicine program for your community.

EDITOR'S NOTE: Special thanks to our guest blogger this week, Rachel Zoch, EMS1 BrandFocus Staff

Over the past decade, the Houston Fire Department has been working on a way to respond to every call and provide appropriate patient care without tying up resources to transport non-emergency patients. These efforts have evolved from a helpline staffed by nurses to the Emergency Telehealth and Navigation, or ETHAN, program.

A telemedicine program, like the ETHAN program in Houston, can help your EMS agency bring a doctor on scene to help diagnose and advise patients. (image/Pulsara)

“ETHAN is essentially a third attempt by the city of Houston, and specifically Houston Fire, to deal with a growing problem,” said Dr. Michael Gonzalez, HFD associate medical director and director of the ETHAN project, “and that’s the increasing use of 911 for a variety of reasons that includes a growing number of patients who probably don’t have a true medical emergency.”

Topics: EMS Communication Telemedicine Regional Systems of Care
5 min read

3 Ways Telemedicine can Increase the Reach of Your EMS Agency

By Team Pulsara on Sep 25, 2018

EDITOR'S NOTE: The following content originally appeared on EMS1.com. Special thanks to our guest author, Tim Nowak for EMS1 BrandFocus. Tim is the founder and CEO of Emergency Medical Solutions LLC, an independent EMS training and consulting company that he developed in 2010. He's been involved in EMS and emergency services since 2002 and has worked as an EMT, paramedic and critical care paramedic in a variety of urban, suburban, rural and hospital settings. He’s also been involved as an EMS educator, consultant, item writer, clinical preceptor, board member, reference product developer, firefighter and hazmat technician throughout his career.

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Improve access to care and triage less urgent calls for more efficient use of healthcare resources.

“Hi, Ms. Smith, my name is Dr. Jones. The paramedics tell me you’re having some chest pain today.”

This is what it sounds like when your patient first arrives into the emergency department. It’s also what it sounds like when you’re able to integrate telemedicine into your own prehospital care.

Imagine a camera mounted into the back of your ambulance overlooking the patient. Nearby is a screen that allows your patient to see a neurologist directly and allows the same physician to perform a stroke exam while you transport to the hospital.

Or imagine splitting the screen on your tablet or laptop with a medical control physician while you explain the patient’s ST-segment elevation and then glance over to an image of their 12-lead EKG.

How about the patient who is speaking another language? Imagine having a live interpreter on the other end as you communicate with your rig phone, or allowing the patient to communicate with a translator who is fluent in American Sign Language.

Topics: EMS Telemedicine
4 min read

3 Ways Your Smartphone Can Improve Communication Between EMS and Hospital EDs

By Team Pulsara on Jun 19, 2018

EDITOR'S NOTE: Special thanks to our guest blogger, Yoona Ha with EMS1's BrandFocus Staff.

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When you’re transporting a stroke patient, every second matters. JAMA researchers found that it takes an average of seven minutes for EMS units to arrive on the scene, and nearly one in 10 encounters involve up to a 30-minute wait. For some patients, like those who are transported for having an ischemic stroke, every moment is critical.

Patients with time-sensitive emergencies often get treated by multiple providers at different points, each of whom has to update the next provider with the patient’s information. In a highly stressful emergency room environment, it’s easy for communication to break down during EMS patient handoffs.

Topics: EMS Telemedicine Technology Innovation
1 min read

"Why Telemedicine is Here to Stay:" One Physician's Perspective

By Hannah Ostrem on Oct 19, 2017

Many clinicians today find themselves splitting their time between clinical practice and resident education, which can make scheduling appointments with patients challenging. To mitigate some of the difficulty, some are turning to telemedicine to do everything from initial consults to sending results and answering patient questions. 

In fact, some health care systems are already offering e-visits where a patient can have the entire appointment with a provider electronically and in real time, so they never have to set foot in a physical doctor's office.  

Topics: Telemedicine