"Our general telemedicine module enables a rural ER physician to remotely consult over the Internet with specialists in other hospitals, allowing them to virtually treat any condition - from a skin rash or burn to a broken bone or an aneurism - and everything in between", stated Sandeep Agate, REACH President and CEO.
REACH developed the general telemedicine module in response to demand from current customers - hospitals that already use the company's remote stroke diagnosis and evaluation service. This 100 percent web-based service originally was designed to facilitate faster treatment for stroke patients in rural areas by enabling neurologists to remotely diagnose, evaluate and recommend treatment from anywhere in the world. These same hospitals realized the value of web-based telemedicine and asked REACH Call to design similar modules for other medical conditions.
"This move into general telemedicine expands REACH Call from a very specific use - stroke evaluation - to a very generic competency", Sandeep Agate stated. "Now that we have filled each end of the spectrum, there is a very large gap between our service capabilities and those of our competitors."
More than 50 hospitals have deployed REACH Call in a "Hub and Spoke" design, where a larger "Hub Hospital" provides physician-consulting services to smaller "Spoke Hospitals". Several Spokes are connected to the Hub and leverage the expertise of specialists at the Hub to provide care for patients in their own ERs. These Spokes use a mobile workstation to initiate a consultation request with a physician affiliated with the Hub.
The workstation is an assembly of non-proprietary, off-the-shelf components including a laptop, LCD monitor, keyboard, mouse, and a camera. It is battery powered and is equipped with a wireless bridge for maximum mobility within an ER. Spoke Hospital ER staff can use the Web browser running on the laptop embedded in the workstation to register a patient and request a consult with a remote physician affiliated with the Hub.
"Although REACH started out in stroke care, we originally designed our platform for extensibility so that customers would not have to upgrade hardware or spend capital to increase their telemedicine capabilities in the future", Sandeep Agate stated. "Our existing customers can use the same components to expand their telemedicine offerings into other areas."
Since REACH is a 100 percent web-based turnkey service, there is no hardware or software installed in the Hub Hospital. The consulting physician can use any laptop or PC, a standard off-the-shelf web cam, and a broadband Internet connection to communicate with the Spoke and evaluate the patient. The physician, who can conduct the consultation from anywhere in the world with a broadband Internet connection, has complete control over the two-way audio and video communication and can view all patient data and DICOM images, such as CT Scans or X-rays, to efficiently and effectively evaluate the patient and recommend treatment.
"REACH is not just about stroke anymore, and we are looking forward to expanding this portal in the future to include other specific medical conditions, including cardiology, psychiatry, and neurology", Sandeep Agate stated.
REACH Call Inc. is a full-service Application Services Provider (ASP) offering the most complete, secure and robust web-based tools powered by integrated audio-visual communication capabilities and decision support algorithms. Founded in March 2006 by Dr. David C. Hess and other leaders at the Medical College of Georgia, REACH Call's telestroke/telemedicine solutions provide for remote evaluation and diagnosis of conditions such as stroke. REACH Call's patent-pending technology is the first 100 percent web-based telestroke/telemedicine solution and currently the only one available on the market.