St. Charles Medical Center specialists provide patient diagnosis over 250 miles away using STARBAK technology

Waltham 18 May 2004STARBAK Communications Inc., specialised in integrated solutions that enable users to create, deliver, and manage rich media content, has been selected by the St. Charles Medical Center, specialised in heart, cancer, and orthopaedic care, to successfully stream patient visits from rural towns hundreds of miles away to their specialists at the centre for diagnosis.


As the largest hospital within 35.000 square miles - the same geographic size as Connecticut, Delaware, Hawaii, New Hampshire and Rhode Island combined, St. Charles Medical Center is committed to serving its remote patients with the same quality of care as their local patients, by using quality telemedicine technology.

"Often times you have a single doctor available for a town of 600 people. Given their location and based on the patient's condition, transportation is often challenging and may be risky. In this situation, getting a specialist's diagnosis via telemedicine technology is critical to the patient and serves as a back up diagnosis for the doctor", stated Ruth Giesking, Director of Telemedicine at St. Charles' Medical Center-Bend. "We chose STARBAK's technology because we were looking for a product to support our mission of providing quality care via telemedicine and did not want to reinvent the wheel. STARBAK's proven experience in telemedicine, product reliability, and seamless interoperability with the videoconferencing endpoints used on the network made them a clear fit for our needs."

St. Charles currently uses streaming media technology to educate its staff of over 200 physicians, as well as physicians in remote areas. By using the STARBAK Create VCG, they are able to capture and save live educational events which qualify for continuing medical education credit, and make them available to physicians who are not able to attend the seminars due to location or schedules.

Recently, St. Charles expanded this service to include live and streamed patient diagnosis. Specialists at St. Charles-Bend are now able to verify non-emergency patient diagnosis or conditions by viewing the information streamed to the server, saving the patient a long and avoidable trip across the Cascade Mountain Range into the medical centre.

"Telemedicine provides tremendous benefits to the rural patient", explained Tom Fitzpatrick, MD, a rural physician practising in Burns, Oregon. "It is the beginning of a more comprehensive approach to providing patients and providers with access to specialists at urban hospitals. As we continue to use it, we are finding new ways to improve patient care and treatment."

The STARBAK Create VCG is an integrated hardware and software appliance that provides a gateway service from traditional videoconferencing environments to IP streaming. The content captured by a videoconference end point is immediately available for viewing from a network attached PC and is archived for on-demand access when required. The STARBAK Create VCG works seamlessly with other STARBAK products that manage end-to-end video applications from content creation through delivery and consumption by a content user. These systems are deployed in a wide variety of applications in educational, medical, legal, finance, government and corporate environments where IP video is leveraged to meet communication objectives.

STARBAK builds award winning technology that radically simplifies the creation, management and delivery of video-based applications over networks. This technology is available to enterprise, educational and government customers as integrated appliances and solutions. STARBAK technology is also available to OEMs who need Windows Media client and server capabilities in Linux-based devices. STARBAK was founded in January 2000 and is based in the suburban Boston, Massachusetts area. The company is privately funded with lead investors including Venrock Associates, Atlas Venture, and Carlyle Venture Partners.

Leslie Versweyveld

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