Telemedicine is the practice of medicine over distance with the use of telecommunications equipment. Early telemedicine solutions were a simple telephone call from one physician to another requesting advice or consultation. Today, telemedicine brings patients, physicians and specialists located hundreds of miles from each other into one setting for actual examinations, evaluations and consultations via store-and-forward and live video interaction.
The Telemedicine Network currently consists of nine sites with an additional 20 sites to be connected over the next nine months. By year 2005, 223 Health Centers or Patient Clinics, 21 Rural and Regional Hospitals and nine National Hospitals are to be connected to the network. "We are providing greater accessibility to health care services and resources in rural communities as a result of this programme", stated Jamie Cortes, M.D., and General Surgeon at the Hospital Nacional de Nino, San Jose. "I believe the Costa Rica Telemedicine Network will be the model replicated throughout Latin America."
The Telemedicine Network utilises the MedVizer software developed by ViTel Net. MedVizer is a standard multi-media medical record information manager which displays health care information in an image and video-enhanced environment, utilising standard file formats. In addition, it uses a unique volume management network that manages each patient folder and its associated stored objects. It employs a multi-media open architecture database with a customisable patient record, while including index keys for rapid querying of patient databases.
The MedVizer software operates in store-and-forward or real time modes to distribute the patient information utilising the Internet or any other conventional telecommunication system. With the addition of the twenty sites, ViTel Net's role will expand to and encompass training, support, maintaining the existing sites and integrating the new sites. "Everyone at ViTel Net is very proud of this news", commented Allen Izadpanah, President and CEO of ViTel Net.
"Being a part of a team which is providing accessible health care services to rural communities throughout an entire nation is a very exciting event. It demonstrates the versatility of our company. We are providing not only the telemedicine software solution but the implementation of a very large telemedicine network which utilises our electronic patient information system in Spanish."
ViTel Net is a telemedicine and e-health systems developer and integrator. State-of-the-art multimedia information management integration is the cornerstone of all of its telemedicine, telehealth, and e-health solutions. And the company has a history: it has been providing much needed enterprise-wide, integrated medical records and telemedicine and telehealth solutions since 1989.