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Effingham Health System offering new program for local elementary schools

POSTED: August 2, 2017 5:03 p.m.

For parents, getting school age children the medical care they need when they aren’t feeling well can be a real challenge. Beginning this fall, a new telemedicine program from Effingham Health System will give parents of Guyton Elementary and Springfield Elementary students the option to have their children “visit” the doctor while they are in school.

Effingham Health TELEMED will transform healthcare for children in our community.

It will make healthcare more convenient and accessible for parents, avoid delays in treatment, and enhance learning by decreasing absenteeism.

Fran Baker-Witt, Effingham Health System’s CEO, says this pilot program is part of the organization’s strategic plan.

“The launch of Effingham Health TELEMED in our schools is an important part of our commitment to the community—to deliver innovative healthcare programs that align with our vision.”

Effingham County’s non-profit healthcare system is working with the Effingham County Board of Education on implementation of the program, with the intention of rolling out to more schools soon.

According to Joseph Tallent, Community and Operations Coordinator for Effingham Health System, it is the first such program in the greater Savannah region.

“This cutting-edge initiative sets the standard for partnering with our community to improve health outcomes,” explained Kathy Sydow, Interim Chief Nursing Officer for the fast-growing, non-profit health system.

Telemedicine in schools has met with great success in the past few years.

Effingham Health TELEMED is partnering with Georgia Partnership for Telehealth, which has launched telemedicine programs in over 100 schools in Georgia.

“Being a part of their pacesetting program is a real honor for Effingham Health System,’” Tallent said.

HOW IT WORKS

With the parent’s permission, assessments and diagnoses will be performed by a physician or advance practitioner from Effingham Health System.

Their care team will advise on medical treatment and call in any prescriptions for the parent to pick up at their convenience.

The school nurse will follow up with parents after the visit.

Parents may pre-enroll during the months of August and September to participate in Effingham Health TELEMED, which will launch in Oct. 2017.

While pre-enrollment assures access to the program from its launch date, parent’s will have the option to opt-in to the program at any time.

Today’s telemedicine has evolved to include cutting-edge medical treatment and innovative technology.

A blue tooth stethoscope, HD digital cameras, monitors, and a digital scope, provide a high definition picture of the patient for the physician, who communicates via live cameras and a computer.

While a secure connection assures patient privacy. Effingham Health TELEMED will also be open to faculty and staff members.

If Guyton Elementary and Springfield Elementary parents have questions about the program, they may contact their school nurse for more information.

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