Greene County marks telehealth milestone

(photo courtesy of the Indiana Rural Health Association)

LINTON, Ind. (Inside INdiana Business) — The Indiana Rural School Clinic Network says Greene County is now the first Indiana county to offer telemedicine at all of its public school districts. Officials cut the ribbon Tuesday on new telehealth school clinics at White River Valley High School, Shakamak School District and Linton-Stockton Schools.

The new telehealth clinics bring the number of facilities in Greene County to seven. The IRSCN says each clinic is served by medical professionals associated with My Virtual Clinic, an online immediate care network operated by Greene County General Hospital.

“Through these state-of-the-art clinics, rural students throughout Greene County will have access to an Indiana licensed physician or provider from a hospital who will use high-tech and high-resolution diagnostic technology – such as an electronic otoscope or digital stethoscope – to digitally view ears, eyes and throat as needed during a student’s visit,” Kathleen Chelminiak, project director of the IRSCN, said in a news release. “Our goal is to provide high quality healthcare quickly and remove any barriers to accessing primary care.”

Funding for the new telehealth clinics is provided by a Health Resources and Services Administration grant, which was made available to the Indiana Rural Health Association. The IRHA says the goal is to help diagnose and treat students without an off-site school visit by a physician or daytime trip to a hospital.

“Through this innovative approach of incorporating telehealth into the school setting, we are confident children will receive quality healthcare that is more accessible to them than it ever has been before,” said IHRA Executive Director Don Kelso. “Parents won’t have to take time off work, struggle with getting an appointment with their doctor or worry about transportation issues. They can now receive help in getting their children healthier, instead of the limitations they may face with seeking primary care during the school day.”