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Touring the Future VA Medical Center at Lake Nona during Cisco Live!

While at Cisco Live! in Orlando, Fla.,  I had the pleasure of leading a tour of the future Veterans Administration (VA)  Medical Center at Lake Nona, along with Dr.  Kenneth Goldberg, the center’s new chief of staff.

This amazing facility will be the first new VA hospital to be built in the U.S. in nearly 20 years. When complete, it will be a state-of-the-art medical center that will care for many of the approximately 400,000 veterans and their families living in Central Florida (1.8 million veterans call Florida home).

The 1.2 million square-foot facility in Orange County will be one of the largest hospitals in the VA system. It will have a large multispecialty outpatient clinic, a 134-bed inpatient diagnostic and treatment hospital, a 118-bed nursing home, a 60-bed domiciliary, and a veterans benefit mini service center. Its campus will also include the Simulation Learning Education and Research Network, which is a high-technology, immersive environment that uses simulation to train VA medical personnel. Read More »

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Care at a distance: Connecting the previously unconnected

As more and more provider networks turn to accountable care organizations, a greater emphasis is being placed on telemedicine for care management. At Cisco Live 2013 this week, we’re seeing this trend manifest as the focus of many of our healthcare customers turns to improving patient access to care and transforming the clinician experience.

One such customer is Nemours Children’s Hospital. Today, Bernie Rice, chief of information technology at Nemours demonstrated how physicians and specialists are able to collaborate over distance to examine patients, bringing care regardless of where the patients are located. Through a series of demos, attendees witnessed firsthand the connection of a physician in a hospital directly to a patient at her home, as well as the interaction of physician, nurse and patient all located in three different locations.

The demo illustrated how a remote physician can listen to a heartbeat, receive vitals—blood pressure and temperature— and interact with patients through high definition video. Other capabilities include the ability to view ultrasound images, look into the ear canal and examine magnified images of skin.

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Cisco Grants Strategy Team can help you Secure Grant Funding

Cisco Grants Support Desk at ATA 2013If you visited the Cisco booth at last week’s ATA 2013 conference, you might have had the opportunity to speak onsite with a member of the Cisco Grants Strategy Team.  But if you didn’t, we want you to know that the Cisco Grants Strategy Team is still available to help.

We find that many organizations struggle to identify funding sources for telehealth projects.  The Cisco Grants Strategy Team can help by researching Federal, State and Foundation grant opportunities that align with your organization’s needs. 

The mission of the Cisco Grants team is to:

  • Deliver grant education/training and funding research services
  • Offer feedback on applicant eligibility and project competitiveness
  • Provide targeted grant application and writing support
  • Consult on post-funding project implementations

Cisco also offers a series of webcasts to help you learn more about specific grant opportunities.  Upcoming webcasts include:

Funding Public Health and Prevention Efforts
May 21, 2013
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Join Grants Office and special guests from Cisco as we discuss:

  • Positioning projects for specific grant programs, such as Prevention and Public Health Fund Coordinated Chronic Disease Prevention and Health Promotion Program and the Public Prevention Health Fund: Community Transformation Grants
  • Integrating technology and equipment into projects and proposals, including chronic disease management tracking software and other mHealth solutions
  • Examples of previously funded projects
  • Tips for successful community-wide collaboration amongst local governments (public health departments), providers, patients and policy-makers.

Funding School Based Health Centers
July 23, 2013
Register Now

Join Grants Office and special guests from Cisco as we discuss:

  • The latest information on the future of federal funding for SBHCs and their capital improvement projects
  • Specific strategies and tips for positioning a winning application to HRSA through SBHCC or any future programming
  • Writing technology and equipment, such as telehealth capabilities into SBHCC proposals
  • Leveraging national, regional and local foundations for SBHC projects

To learn more about Healthcare Technology solutions and available grant funding, please contact your Cisco Account Manager or Regional Grants Manager at grantquestions@cisco.com.

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Cisco Collaboration Comes to the Rescue for INTEGRIS Health

More than 20 years ago when INTEGRIS Health chose to invest in collaboration technologies, little did they know they were making a decision that would one day save lives.

With more than 16 hospitals and 9,000 employees throughout Oklahoma, INTEGRIS is the state’s largest health care system. An early adopter of telemedicine, they implemented video technology in the early 1990s. But what started simply as an effective way to connect hospitals has grown into a life-saving program that has decreased stroke mortality rates and increased access to health specialists.

What’s INTEGRIS’ secret? A team of top medical professionals armed with Cisco’s leading edge collaboration technologies. Solutions like Cisco TelePresence and Cisco Jabber allow two-way, interactive collaboration between doctors and patients to support INTEGRIS’ telehealth programs that treat everything from mental health illness and speech impairments to stroke and Hepatitis C patients.

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Telehealth Takes Center Stage

As my colleagues just wrapped up participating in the 2-day World Congress Telehealth Executive Summit and are preparing for the 6th Annual Community for Connected Health Summit at HIMSS13, I’ve been thinking even more about telehealth technology and how far it has come since my first exposure to it almost almost thirteen years ago.

The technology has made amazing strides, and with healthcare costs on the rise, it’s no surprise government agencies and other organizations are looking to the technology to curb health costs while increasing the efficiency and quality of care.

Telehealth technologies, such as Cisco’s HealthPresence (and version 2.5, just announced this month), can increase access to specialized care and allow medical specialists to conduct virtual consultations. By leveraging technologies and solutions like Unified Workspace and cloud, telehealth has real potential to transform the delivery of healthcare.

Realizing the power of connected healthcare, House Representative Mike Thompson introduced a telehealth bill in late December. If passed, Telehealth Promotion Act of 2012 could extend telehealth benefits to more than 75 million Americans by removing two existing barriers–licensure and reimbursements.

…and the support for telehealth keeps going.

The Federal Communications Commission recently announced that it will allocate $400 million a year to expand existing telehealth pilot program. The funds will help increase connectivity between urban medical centers and rural clinics to better coordinate care and lower costs among other benefits.

With more organizations realizing the potential of telehealth technologies, it’s clear we may soon see it take center stage. Where do you see telehealth having the greatest impact on government and the public sector?

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