TeleHealth Services Launching in Tonopah - KTVN Channel 2 - Reno Tahoe Sparks News, Weather, Video

TeleHealth Services Launching in Tonopah

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"Hello, I'm Dr. Salas. I'm a Physiatrist at Renown. I do non-surgical spine and sports care. And you are? Hi, I’m Julie.”

Sounds like a typical doctor-patient meeting, but this conversation is happening over a high-definition live, video feed. The doctor is in Reno and the patient is nearly 200 miles away in Tonopah.

"I fell down my porch a couple days ago and when I landed I twisted wrong,” explains Julie. "Can you show me where you landed or hit where you fell?” asks Dr. Michael Salas, who specializes in Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation with Renown. He has also practiced telemedicine for years; since serving in the Navy, which makes him a perfect fit for Renown’s TeleHealth program.

Renown Health offers the TeleHealth service to two dozen communities in Nevada and California with more than 30 specialty doctors available to help patients in rural areas. Renown Medical Group – Tonopah will open on June 1.

Secure teleconferencing connects patients to primary and specialty doctors. Doctors are not only available to see the patient and evaluate symptoms and injuries face-to-face, they can also access their medical records for a thorough exam. "When we're connected electronically… I'll see the provider's notes, any diagnostic studies done, graphs, labs; I'll have access to all that information," said Dr. Salas.

Doctors will also be able to see inside the patient’s ears, eyes and throat with digital equipment that sends in live pictures. Blood labs can also be taken with almost real-time results thanks to iSTAT technology made possible by a $100,000 grant.

TeleHealth’s Business Development Manager, Corie Nieto says the service is well-received in Tonopah – a community of nearly 3,000 – which lost its medical facility last year. "If we didn't have this service, would these patients seek the care that they need? And often times they say no,” shares Nieto.

However, Tonopah now has access to it all. For Julie, it is quality care – conveniently close to home.

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