Eagle Hospital Physicians, a physician-led hospitalist management firm and telemedicine provider for hospitals across the United States, is finding a “growing new market in the nation’s long-term acute care hospitals, whose unique needs are a good fit for telemedicine services.”
“In medicine, there are always new frontiers—new viruses to conquer, new treatment approaches to manage, new technologies to incorporate in practice,” said Talbot “Mac” McCormick, M.D., president and CEO of the company.
The company, we’re told, began offering telemedicine services to regular acute care hospitals eight years ago.
“At Eagle, we are finding the same holds true for telemedicine. New uses for it are emerging every day,” McCormick says.
During the eight years since it began its telemedicine initiative, Eagle has established programs providing telehospitalist services and a range of telemedicine specialties in acute care hospitals across the United States.
An estimated 10-20 percent of hospital patients with critical illness require prolonged medical care after acute care hospitalization. They might be on a ventilator or have other needs like ongoing dialysis or wound care that require more specialized physician care than a skilled nursing facility (SNF) provides.
LTACHs have grown significantly over the last 25 years in response to a growing patient population. Some are free-standing facilities; others occupy wings or sections of acute care hospitals.
“LTACH patients don’t usually require any higher level of nursing care than patients in SNFs,” said Dr. McCormick. “With the low-intensity level of nursing and primary physician care, however, comes a higher level of specialized physician care for LTACH patients—requiring more visits by specialists than most hospital patients typically need. Telemedicine can easily fill this need.”