HCA, Illini Community Hospital find psychiatric patients prefer robots to in-person visit with a doctor

From Healthcare IT News:

Illini Community Hospital is a 25-bed critical access hospital in Illinois that, despite its size, has a thriving telebehavioral care program that utilizes three robots.

The facility operates the 10-bed Worthington Square geriatric unit wherein psychiatrists see patients remotely from a tertiary facility in Quincy, Illinois and as far away as Kansas City.

“Surprisingly, most of the geriatric psych patients are very comfortable with the robot because they remember the cartoon TV show The Jetsons,” Illini CEO Kathy Hull said.

Indeed, as telebehavioral services continue gaining traction, hospitals of all sizes are tapping into unexpected benefits on consulting with patient remotely via modern technologies. Healthcare Corporation of America and PeaceHealth System are also seeing results similar to Illini Community’s, though each is taking a different tack to reach patients.

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