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Telehealth

 

Mission

To improve access to health care in underserved Alaskan communities through the expansion and adoption of telehealth initiatives.

Goals and Objectives

  • Advocate for and assist in the development and implementation of health information technologies including electronic medical records, personal health records, tele-health systems, and a cohesive state-wide health information exchange system.
  • Collect and disseminate program information.
  • Act as a liaison between DHSS and federal, state and private organizations.
  • Identify laws, regulation and reimbursement practices that serve as barriers to implementation of health information technologies while assisting with development of solutions to these barriers.
  • Partner with Medicaid services in efforts to increase implementation and sustainability of health information technologies and tele-health programs through appropriate compensation for technology based services.
  • Serve on state-wide health information technology committees.
  • Assess impact of health information technology initiatives on improvements to access and continuity of care.
  • Advocate for development and system-wide use of health information technologies to improve provider to provider sharing of relevant treatment focused patient information.
  • Identify gaps in services that health information technologies and telehealth systems could effectively address.

Health Information Technologies

Health Information Technology (HIT) offers great promise as a means to achieve more affordable, safe, and accessible healthcare for Alaskans state-wide. Integrated HIT has the ability to bring all levels of medical care together, from general practitioners to specialists, effectively bridging the healthcare gap experienced by many of our communities where shortages of appropriately trained healthcare providers have been difficult to resolve.

HIT includes a variety of digital applications used in the delivery and documentation of health care assessments, treatment, and medical records generated by health care providers. These applications include a wide array of tools used to enhance patient safety and continuity of care including personal health records (PHR’S), electronic medical records (EMR’s), computerized physician order entry (CPOE) systems, health information exchange (HIE) system, as well as telehealth applications such as teleradiology, telebehavioral health, telepharmacy, and distance learning systems utilizing video conferencing equipment.

Integration of HIT applications will improve quality of care for Alaskans system-wide including increased patient safety, enhanced provider to provider sharing of relevant patient information, improved continuity of care, improved access to essential services in underserved areas, simplification of patient education, and decreased costs related to improved efficiencies in management of clinical data and treatment related information.

For more information contact:

Libby Watanabe, Health Program Manager II
(907) 465-8506

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