TeleHealth News


October 26, 2017




Reminiscing on the occasion of the season, awhile back I had the fortune or the misfortune of working the ER on Halloween night which happened to fall on Friday. At the time, I was living in a small but very multicultural town in Northern New Mexico. The night turned to be more wacky than any of us expected. Of-course the usual, Friday night crowd kept us busy but the unusual was what made it, well, rather memorable.
It started with the usual minor accidents due to drivers running into each other. Kids falling in the dark streets and bruising themselves, and so on. Then closer to midnight two very striking young ladies showed up in the ER in witch attire. Well the outfits were more risqué than witchy and that attracted some unwanted attention. The ladies were from out of town - California to be exact - visiting friends for Halloween. They were sisters with a long history of terrible asthma - yes both of them. At the friend's party, the guests got to drinking and smoking and more smoking and different kinds of smoking and before long the indoor atmosphere got too polluted and our young ladies found themselves in severe distress. Their inhalers just weren't doing the job and they were rushed to the ER by the police - ambulances were busy chasing fender benders. In their haste they didn't grab their coats and showed up in revealing witch costumes.
It was particularly cold that evening in the high country of Northern New Mexico. As it was usual for our town, several locals from the nearby Pueblo and their homeless town friends use to sneak in the waiting area of the hospital to get warm. They were regulars and generally subdued and quiet, if they got rowdy, we would asked them to leave and they usually quieted down. But that night being Halloween, they had a bit too much to drink and the arrival of two very attractive blond witches - well just got them too excited. The policeman who brought the witches was known to be a bit rough and as he too was interested in the ladies, got into an argument with the others in the waiting room. In his roughness, he turned one of the unwelcome visitors to the wall and grabbed his Mace Spray and proceeded to use it on his subject. A scuffle ensued and as the officer pressed the Mace Spray, the Indian ducked and the officer sprayed himself in the eyes. Well you can guess the chaos that followed.
The Indians and their friends dashed out into the dark night. A couple of patient gowns kept our ladies warm and covered. We rushed them to the P.T. department across the hall and locked the doors. As it was the standard treatment of the day, we gave them each a shot of epinephrine and started them on a nebulizer. Much to our dismay, they told us that they had been dealing with asthma much of their lives. They were started on a new treatment by their pulmonalogist back in California but didn't know the medication they were given. Fortunately for us, it all turned out well. Our Indian friends made it back to the sanctuary of their tribal pueblo, we flushed the officers eyes and sent him home, dressed, bandaged, and splinted other injured patients, treated the sniffling children and cared for other medical problems. It was a full and eventful night.
We were lucky that night, for our patients were young and did respond to the management of their acute asthmatic attack. Today of course, better treatments are available and with the help of telehealth we can access patients' medical charts from out of town and consult their providers back home - even on Halloween evening. Telehealth, Telemedicine, and Tele-education are great tools that allow us to care for this mobile generation. Still, it helps to remind ourselves of how we dealt with medical urgencies back in not so distant past.


In the News:

   Join us at our 2nd Annual Conference - Nov. 4, 2017!
Brainstorming Innovative
Health Information Processes

Best Global Universities Rankings - UNM is #237 
US News & World Report

Sustainable Development Goals ( SDG) and human rights 
Healthy Lives Conference in Porgress this week in NY

Effectiveness of Influenza Vaccines in Asthma   
Oxford Academic 
         World Hunger Is Increasing, Thanks to Wars and Climate Change  
Scientific American

The future of graduate and postdoctoral training in the biosciences  
eLife Sciences  
         Shapeshifting Crosswalks May Be Key to Safer Streets of the future   

Stop asking if your business is 'safe' from a cyber attack   
Biz Journal

For more relevant news checkout our website.


Of Interest:

On this day; Oct 26 in 1863, an International conference began in Geneva aimed at improving medical conditions on battlefields. It came about from an outrageous scene witnessed by a 31-year-old Swiss businessman named Henri Dunant who was traveling through the area after the Battle of Solferino, fought in northern Italy in 1859. He was utterly horrified by the battle and its aftermath. The bloody battle between the Austrians and a French-Italian alliance had lasted for a long time before the Austrians were driven into retreat. The casualties have been estimated at about 30,000 to 40,000 men. Thousands of wounded were left on the battlefield, far too many for the small medical teams to cope with. Many were being murdered on the request of suffering wounded.
He helped organize the people from the nearby villages to bring water, food and aid to the wounded, regardless of their nationality. He persuaded the French to release a few captured Austrian doctors to help and he paid for the hasty creation of makeshift hospitals.
Afterwards he organized an International Conference to address the issue of caring for the wounded on the battlefields. On October 29, 1863, delegates meeting in Switzerland adopted 10 resolutions aimed at helping wounded soldiers, thereby launching what would become the International Red Cross and Red Crescent . They advocated neutrality for medical personnel on the battlefield and laid the groundwork for the creation of affiliated national societies. The first Red Cross office formed in Württemberg, Germany a few weeks later. Nearly every country in the world has since adopted the rules.


How can TeleHealth help your Practice:

War time is not the only time people
need help. Shortage of providers in the
rural areas is critical and residents of
these areas need us. Consider
expanding your practice to the
rural areas of our state
through TeleHealth.

Ask us how.

Many state laws, including NM,
require insurance companies to
pay for TeleHealth consultation.


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 Useful links:

    American Telemedicine Association
Assoc. of Clinicians for the Underserved
Burrell College of Osteopathic Medicine
Con Alma Health Foundation
Directory of State Medical Boards
Federation of State Medical Boards
Interstate Medical Licensure Compact
National Rural Health Association
New Mexico Broadband Program
New Mexico Department of Health
New Mexico First
NM Health Resources
NM legislature
Upcoming NM Legislative meetings
NM Medical Board
NM Rural Hospital Network
UNM Center for Telehealth
UNM Project ECHO
World Health Organization (WHO)


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