Posted by: John_Hamilton on 09/16/2013 02:08 PM
Updated by: John_Hamilton on 09/16/2013 02:17 PM
Expires: 01/01/2018 12:00 AM
Mark Twain Medical Center Expands Technology for ICU Patients
San Andreas, CA...MTMC Uses Robots to Connect Mercy Specialist Physicians to Patients in ICU. With the support of Mercy Telehealth Network, Critical Care Intensivists are now able to be at Mark Twain Medical Center (MTMC) Intensive Care bedsides (virtually) within minutes, with the ability to support time-sensitive decisions. Additionally, this system provides MTMC physicians with the input and support from specialists to allow the patients to remain in their hospital and community. Available 24/7, this will be a collaborative program between the staff at MTMC and intensivists (a physician who specializes in the care and treatment of patients in intensivecare) from The Dignity Health Mercy Telehealth Network...
The Mercy Telehealth Network connects Mercy neurology specialists in Sacramento with physicians and
patients at Mark Twain Medical Center via high-speed data lines to quickly evaluate diagnose and treat
patients in our ICU department with hyper-acute strokes, pulmonary disease, and neuro deficits.
“Each day, ICU patients meet with our care team which includes Physical Therapy, Pharmacy, Nursing,
Hospitalists, and the ICU Medical Director,” commented Joanne Jeffords, MTMC Chief Nursing Officer.
“The robot is then activated and the team begins to consult and make recommendations for care, with the
intensivists providing expert input. Our robot is utilized daily with all of our ICU patients; we have made
this a daily practice by implementing technology that provides a broader range of care for patients in our
community. MTMC is providing high-tech, high-touch care every day. Unlike any other rural
community hospital, our robot provides this technology in our ICU as a part of our standard daily care
program including responding to emergencies for stroke patients”
The Mercy Telehealth Network’s telestroke service uses InTouch Health wireless remote robots to
connect patients to neurologists and Intensivists from the Mercy Neurological Institute in Sacramento.
This technology is the only FDA approved telehealth technology available. Stroke specialists at the hub
“control centers” remotely control the wireless, mobile robots located at 12 Northern and Central
California hospitals in the network, which enable them to examine and talk directly to patients, consult
with on-site physicians, assist and help direct therapy and interact directly with the family. This new
robot Technology – is exclusively at Mark Twain Medical Center. The Mercy Telehealth Network hubs
are located at Mercy General Hospital in Sacramento and Mercy San Juan Medical Center in Carmichael.
“With the support of Dignity Health and the Elliott Family Foundation, we began this journey about two
years ago with the planning and implementation in our Emergency Room for a Telestroke program,” said
Randy Smart, MD, Medical Director of the intensive care unit at Mark Twain Medical Center. “Both our
Emergency Room and ICU patients will now have immediate access and great care from Mercy
neurologists and intensivists during critical times, right here at Mark Twain Medical Center.”
The robot is five-feet-six-inches tall and has a flat-screen computer monitor “face”, on which patients and
family members can see and interact with the physician in real time. A zoom-lens camera and
microphone on top of the screen enables the physician to see and hear patients during examinations, read
patient charts, see test results and view images.
“This partnership demonstrates the commitment from MTMC to our community that we are continuing
to enhance and develop our existing services to meet the health care needs of our community,” stated
hospital president Craig Marks. “Providing quality care, right here and right now, is our priority at
The Mercy Telehealth Network benefits patients by connecting them to highly trained specialists who
might not be available in their home town hospitals and allows patients to be treated in their own
communities, close to home.
“Currently, we are also in the process of expanding TeleHealth into our Family Medical Centers with the
support of Dignity Health and the Mark Twain Health Care District,” remarked Dr. Curtis Allen, Mark
Twain Medical Center Family Medical Center Administrative Director. “This advanced technology will
provide patients needing specialty care with continued excellent medical attention via the robot, right
here in Calaveras County, and they will not have to travel for their appointments to the valley.”
About Dignity Health
Dignity Health, one of the nation’s five largest health care systems, is a 21-state network of nearly
11,000 physicians, 56,000 employees, and more than 300 care centers, including hospitals, urgent and
occupational care, imaging centers, home health, and primary care clinics. Headquartered in San
Francisco, Dignity Health is dedicated to providing compassionate, high-quality and affordable patientcentered
care with special attention to the poor and underserved. In 2012, Dignity Health provided $1.6
billion in charitable care and services. For more information, please visit our website at
www.dignityhealth.org. You can also follow us on Twitter and Facebook.
About Mark Twain Medical Center
Founded in 1951, Mark Twain Medical Center is a 25-bed critical access hospital providing inpatient
acute care, outpatient services and emergency services. The Medical Center’s Medical Staff represents a
broad range of specialties that ensure access to high quality medical care in a rural community. In
addition to being a major provider of health services, Mark Twain Medical Center is also a major source
of jobs for area residents. On average, more than 300 people are employed at the hospital and its five
Family Medical Centers. The Medical Center is a member of Dignity Health, the fifth largest not-forprofit
healthcare system in the nation. For more information, please visit our website at
www.marktwainmedicalcenter.org. Mark Twain Medical Center is also on Facebook.