Dr. Talbot McCormick, President & CEO, Eagle Telemedicine
The telemedicine offerings equip hospitals and emergency facilities with robust clinical coverage.
FREMONT, CA: As death and destruction follows in the wake of Hurricane Dorian, Eagle Telemedicine has stepped forward to aid its hospital partners in the recovery efforts. Its telehospitalists are standing ready to lend assistance throughout the hurricane season, when catastrophic storms threaten to batter the East Coast, disrupting patient care.
Dr. Talbot McCormick, President and CEO at Eagle Telemedicine, said, “Whenever disasters like Hurricane Dorian strike, people naturally want to help. Unfortunately, this impulse is often stymied because they don’t have the resources or systems in place to be effective. With telemedicine, however, there are tools and processes that make real help possible. It’s very encouraging to see how Eagle Telemedicine’s physicians licensed in the state and credentialed at the hospital using established telemedicine infrastructure spring into action to respond to these emergencies.”
Eagle’s team of virtual physicians is always ready to help the threatened hospitals, collaborating with them to confirm backup access and test systems which can prove invaluable during the storm. It also provides assistance to on-the-ground physicians unable to get to the facility owing to road closures and post-storm follow-ups. Eagle closely monitors storms, working with its virtual physicians to form possible evacuation plans and offer backup coverage.
Eagle is one of the first companies to emerge in the telemedicine physician service sector, delivering robust telemedicine programs to acute care hospitals, micro-hospitals, and long-term acute care hospitals (LTACHs). Its solutions enable facilities to provide specialized care to the underserved communities, eliminate locum support costs, prevent burnout, manage coverage gaps, reduce unnecessary transfers, and increase census. The specialties of Eagle include Hospitalist Medicine, Stroke and Acute Neurology, Psychiatry, Critical Care, Cardiology, Infectious Disease, and so on.
“Hospitals that don’t have a telemedicine program in place have to rely on the physicians, nurses, and staff that are onsite or can physically get to the hospital through often dangerous conditions,” Dr. McCormick said. “With Eagle’s telemedicine programs, the tools, processes, and people are already in place to provide assistance. It’s technology-enabled care for patients who may not have any other way to get help.”
For instance, when Hurricane Florence hit the coast of North Carolina as one of the biggest natural catastrophes, the TeleNocturnist program of Eagle bolstered the efforts of a seven-county hospital system with its backup coverage, assisting the local physicians who were unable to reach their facilities.
The loss of internet care proved a challenge to hospitals as the two-way videoconferencing was essential for telemedicine care. However, the satellite phone connections with Eagle Physician proved invaluable for the on-ground clinical teams. Eagle’s virtual physician teams also helped in coordinating the social services and assisting the affected residents. The telemedicine offerings enable a speedy response, allowing for the quick treatment of patients with respiratory issues and asthma symptoms.
The experience has informed and strengthened the model for Eagle’s plan of response for an emergency, especially during the looming threat of natural disasters. The potential of the response model also spurred the hospitals in North Carolina to incorporate the offerings of Eagle Telemedicine into its crisis management strategy.
The offerings of Eagle Telemedicine have proved invaluable in the face of horrifying catastrophes such as Hurricane Florence and Dorian. However, its services are not limited to natural disasters. Its solutions are designed to equip hospitals and facilities with robust clinical coverage from virtually anywhere.
“Eagle Telemedicine is unique in that we have licensed and credentialed physicians, outside the evacuation zones, where they can provide support and respite to onsite staff—or act for physicians who can’t get there locally,” Dr. McCormick said.