Mobile videoconferencing from ambulance speeds up stroke care

From Medical News Today:

The Improving Treatment with Rapid Evaluation of Acute Stroke via Mobile Telemedicine (iTREAT) study is based on a low-cost computer tablet that is like having the hospital doctor in the ambulance with the patient alongside the paramedic.

The iTREAT tablet is suction-mounted to the wall of the ambulance. It is connected to a portable modem and antenna, and communicates through encrypted video signals. The system allows the doctor to confer with the patient and the paramedic.

“In our initial feasibility testing,” Prof. Southerland explains, “we partnered with rural ambulance agencies to allow enough time for the stroke assessment and tested our mobile telestroke system in simulated stroke scenarios.”

He and his colleagues found that the system had sufficient quality and connectivity to allow successful consultations in over 90 percent of local test runs.

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