Healthcare Technology Magazine News

AMD Global Telemedicine Announces the Expansion of School-Based Telemedicine Programs Across 14 States

AMD Global Telemedicine Inc. (AMD), the world’s leading supplier of clinical Telemedicine Encounter Management Solutions (TEMS) TM, announces the expansion of their school-based telemedicine programs across 14 states within the Continental US.

The telemedicine technology is implemented by community health clinics to improve children’s access to quality healthcare and provide primary care services in school clinics. School-based clinics that have adopted AMD’s telemedicine technology represent the following states: Alabama, California, Colorado, Florida, Kentucky, Maine, Maryland, Michigan, New York, North Carolina, Oregon, Tennessee, Texas and Virginia. AMD reports a 250% increase in the number of states using their technology for school-based applications, over the last 18 months.

“Telemedicine technology has allowed us to provide children with easy access to inexpensive healthcare services in an environment conducive to the least disruption possible for them as well as their parents,” commented Sal Saldivar, Chief Information Officer at La Maestra Community Health Centers.

“A single telemedicine system can be deployed seamlessly without requiring additional technical support from the school IT department, and more importantly – AMD’s telemedicine products are easy for our staff to understand and use,” added Saldivar.

“Over the past four years, we have witnessed the tremendous change in how schools are embracing telemedicine technology. What was once considered an IT project by the school system is now a community health program,” commented Dan McCafferty, Vice President, Global Sales and Corporate Development, AMD Global Telemedicine. “We are excited our telemedicine technology is having such an impact on the future of our children,” added McCafferty. AMD Global Telemedicine showcased their telemedicine solutions at the School-Based Health Care convention this week, June 30-July 2 in Seattle, Washington.

Secure Mobile Communication Market in Healthcare Industry

This Frost & Sullivan market insight presents an overview of the secure mobile communication solutions used in the United States healthcare facilities. It highlights the key success factors for secure mobile communication solution providers, and provides strategic recommendations for hospitals that want to implement a secure mobile communication solution.

The base year of this market insight is 2013 and the forecast period ranges from 2014 to 2018.

Introduction and Overview

This Frost & Sullivan market insight presents an overview of the secure mobile communication solutions used in the US healthcare facilities. It highlights the key success factors for secure mobile communication solution providers, and provides strategic recommendations for hospitals that want to implement a secure mobile communication solution. Throughout this insight, "secure mobile communication solution" implies a smartphone-based mobile communication solution that allows secure voice, text, images, and video-based communication between staff members in the hospital, and can also support information exchange between hospital IT systems and smartphones.

Secure Mobile Communication in Healthcare

Most of the organizations in the United States support some form of managed mobility deployments. Popular enterprise mobile applications in the United States include: - Company operations and productivity applications – including file-sync and share, CRM apps such as Salesforce.com, and expense reporting applications such as Concur) - Communication and collaboration applications – including WebEx, and ShareFile - Enterprise messaging applications – including enterprise "social networks", and chat programs.

However, much of the healthcare industry still conducts business by using older systems – including pagers and paper-based written records. Using inefficient systems and processes for care coordination and other important functions in hospitals can negatively impact patient safety, delay patient care and result in operational inefficiencies. There is a clear need for advanced data management and communication systems that can address existing communication challenges in hospitals. Today's mobile computing platforms present a powerful set of technical capabilities that, if leveraged properly, can help improve the efficiency of day-to-day operations of literally any type of organization. Realizing this, many hospitals have already implemented secure mobile communication solutions for mission-critical communication requirements. Changes in Federal Healthcare regulation/guidelines that incentivize healthcare facilities to deliver improved patient care, facilitate better patient data sharing, and focus on improving the patient satisfaction levels are also helping drive a shift towards open, extensible, interoperable, and "mobile-compatible" digital platforms in the United States.

Secure Mobile Communication—Telecommunication Trends

A smaller form factor, remote device management capabilities, and secure voice and data communication abilities of smartphones provide the essential ingredients for supporting a wide range of use cases in hospitals – including care coordination, physician alerts, and patient engagement. This is not to say that personal smartphones can simply be brought into hospitals and used "as is"; a significant amount of customization, integration, and security enhancements are still required to make smartphones work in hospital environments. This is where secure mobile communication solution providers come in. Secure mobile communication solution providers use on-premise or cloud-based platforms to deliver a customized (and secure) voice and/or data communication service that can help hospitals improve clinical workflow, and ultimately deliver better patient care at a lower cost.

Some key telecommunication trends that are driving smartphone adoption in hospitals include: 

Bring-your-own-device (BYOD): Mobile has transformed the way business is done today. An increasing number of US businesses are deploying mobile software applications for use by their workers. A similar trend is starting to appear in the healthcare vertical as well, where the physician and the nursing staff are increasingly demanding access to work-related IT applications on their personal mobile devices. As a result, hospitals are exploring ways to provide their workforce with secure mobile access on their personal mobile devices.

Increased device capabilities: The current generation of smartphones support advanced data protection mechanisms including device and application-level virtual private networks (VPNs), and support for digital certificates. These technologies can be used to comply with the strict data privacy requirements of hospitals.

Multiple data connectivity options: Solution providers can leverage messaging, email, and other IP-based data channels for deploying secure mobile communication solutions. This helps to mobilize multiple types of clinical data sets in a format most suited for the recipient device.

Availability of robust and secure on-premise and cloud services: On-premise deployments are popular in hospitals. However, cloud-based platforms have made strong inroads in this industry and their adoption is expected to increase in the next 5 years. Research indicates that it is not only the size of the organization that decides if an organization chooses an on-premise or a cloud-based platform. Factors such as ease of implementation, total cost of ownership (TCO) and return on investment (ROI), and product capabilities play an important role in this decision. Therefore, product capabilities, and cost of implementation and total cost of ownership are important considerations as well.

Secure Mobile Communication—Demand Drivers

The key demand drivers for smartphone adoption in hospitals include:

Need for addressing communication inefficiencies: By allowing information to be pushed to the responsible or designated staff member in the hospital, smartphones can address many of the existing communication challenges in the US hospitals. For example, workers in a hospital don't have to spend time on unproductive activities (such as walking down the hospital hallways to get in touch with the attending physician). They can use a smartphone solution to call or send a message to the physician in charge. Similarly, critical lab results could be sent via secure messages to the on-call physician, who can then respond appropriately. A simple use case such as being able to communicate with designated staff members quickly can collectively save hundreds of thousands