An area hospital now offers a virtual clinic to bring speciality care closer to home.
"Well, I'm telling you that is a phenomenal drop." Dr Linda Siminerio gives Robin Pittman a virtual pat on the back for bringing her blood sugar down dramatically.
Siminerio, a Professor of Medicine and Assistant Professor of Nursing, both at the University of Pittsburgh, and Executive Director, University of Pittsburgh Diabetes Institute is in Pittsburgh. Robin is at UPMC Bedford.
They're consulting through telemedicine, with the help of certified diabetes educator Tammie Payne, who monitors Robin's treatment at the local hospital and works with her to follow the doctor's instructions.
Robin says, "just having the doctor looking over my shoulder and saying you need a little more insulin, you need a little more exercise, it really helps."
Robin's not the only success story at the virtual clinic. The first patient, Teri Williams says of the endocrinologist at the virtual clinic, "she had really helped me she tweaked my medicine some and went over everything and it was so much better."
Diabetes care is one of a growing number of speciality services at UPMC Bedford's Teleconsult Center.
Magnification scopes and a digital stethoscope are among the medical tools hooked up to the telemedicine system so doctors in Pittsburgh can consult patients in Bedford on infectious diseases, endocrine surgery, and colorectal diseases.
UPMC Bedford CEO Roger Winn says before the end of the year, patients at the hospital can expect neurologists, lung doctors, and rheumatologists, to be available in the virtual clinic. Twelve to 18 specialists could be available by camera in the next year or so.
Pediatric specialty services are coming next spring.