Carpe Diem

Markets in everything: Revolutionary kiosk telehealthcare

From Gizmag:

Billed as a telehealth system, the HealthSpot Station is a telepresence kiosk designed to take pressure off a beleaguered health care system by providing a private area where acute care patients can speak to a physician over a high-definition video conference system.

It’s purpose is to act as an alternative to urgent care centers and emergency rooms while giving physicians a way to use their time more efficiently. There is an attendant on duty to answer questions and provide assistance and inside the kiosk is a suite of digital instruments to aid diagnosis, such as a pulse oximeter, blood pressure cuff, dermascope, patient touchscreen, video conference screen, otoscope and stethoscope. In addition, there are antibacterial surfaces and UV-C lighting.

HealthSpot sees the kiosk being used in a wide variety of locations including grocery stores, hospitals, doctors and specialists offices, emergency rooms, large businesses, rural communities, military bases, schools, nursing homes and remote villages in developing countries.

The video above introduces the HealthSpot Station and here’s the company’s website.

25 thoughts on “Markets in everything: Revolutionary kiosk telehealthcare

  1. the absolute most important thing for you when you get Ad Hoc health care if for them to have access to your medical history.

    And the good news is that many doctors are using electronic medical records because the govt has made “grants” available for them to purchase the hardware and software.

    The next step is for these systems to talk to each other and the good news is that to a certain degree they do.

    A friend went to a doc-in-a-box with a persistent cough and they were able to get her electronic records and from those records made a diagnosis – that was different from her primary care doc – and it was a correct diagnosis.

    Another electronic network tracks prescription drugs.

    I got a flu vaccine the other day and was prepared to pay cash (and I got a cash price quote) but the provider – a pharmacy was able to electronically access my insurance and determined that they would pay for it – and they did and I got the shot as a covered service.

    The day is getting closer and closer when you will be able to go to any qualified/licensed medical provider and they will be able to review your complete medical history as well as what drugs you currently are taking – and give you a cash price if your insurance does not cover.

  2. Actually I understand that the texas prison system did this first. They now have no physicians at most prisons but rather have the patient teleconfence in with physicians at Galveston at the U Texas Medical Branch. The question is will this go in big cities, or where it is more needed small towns that lack physicians.

    • but the kiosks no matter where they are located are not going to work well if the doctor on the other end cannot see your medical history.

      this is where lawsuits come from and DOcs know it.

      unless they know your history – they are at a huge disadvantage as to possible complications from contraindicated treatment and drugs.

      • Christ! Here we go again.

        Actually, a doctor can do a lot without your medical history. Do you think emergency room doctors piddle around with histories as people lay bleeding in front of them? Where the hell does a doctor get your medical history? From you. If you’re sitting in that kiosk, you can give the doctor your medical history exactly the way you do when you go to see a new doctor.

        • actually what an ER Dr does to you (or not) depends a lot of your medical history.

          Are you Type II? Are you taking NSAIDs? do you have prosthetic implants, are you allergic? Have you had heart, kidney, liver problems and if so what was the nature of them?

          for someone who has never been sick, never been treated for something, does not take drugs, a kiosk might work for you but most legitimate doctors are not going to treat you for anything major beyond a sore throat or cold unless they have a pretty good “picture” of you and that’s just not going to happen at a kiosk.

          this whole line of thinking is simple minded and assumes best case situations.

          In real life, people can have chronic conditions that in combination with other factors can rule out certain treatments or drugs – if the doctor knows and you can remember it all by memory (which most folks can’t).

          This is the stuff of lawsuits. If you have a potentially serious condition – like heart arrhythmia – that even you may be unaware of – the Doc at the kiosk can’t perform a simple routine physical on you either to know that.

          he also can’t order simple blood tests and see the results and get back to you afterwards either.

          Don’t get me wrong. I’m NOT arguing against the kiosks. I’m just pointing out they have some serious limitations and they do not represent the direction that traditional medical care is headed.

          they might work for simple things but even the fact that the doc cannot put a stethoscope on you is one of the fundamentals that most doctors do when seeing you initially.

          • this whole line of thinking is simple minded

            Exactly what I thought reading your drivel.

            ER doctors don’t have access to your history unless you’re wearing a bracelet or they can ask you about it.

            What about the kiosk doctor’s ability to get your medical history from you as you sit there in the kiosk is too complicated for you to understand?

          • “ER doctors don’t have access to your history unless you’re wearing a bracelet or they can ask you about it.”

            they don’t usually unless it’s a local hospital that you’ve been to previously but the important point is that how they treat you is DIFFERENT if they don’t know your medical history.

            It’s more conservative and more timid and many tests are ordered and treatment options are limited until they find out more.

            “What about the kiosk doctor’s ability to get your medical history from you as you sit there in the kiosk is too complicated for you to understand?”

            no it’s not but the appeal and benefit of the kiosk is the convenience and perceived immediacy of receiving advice and treatment and you said simple-minded and yes it’s simple minded to think you can walk up to a kiosk and get treated immediately.

            Fundamental to most doctors is their ability to examine you physically – to hear your heart and lungs, to see your eyes and other physical features which helps them ascertain your condition.

            Even when you go to a doc-in-the-box, this is almost always what they do after they make you sit and fill out pages of medical history that you may or may not remember completely.

            It’s simple minded to think you can get good treatment from a kiosk.

            What’s the first think you hear when you call your doctors office these days: ” if this is an emergency, hang up and call 911″.

            Again – I totally support the Kiosk idea – but I think it’s usefulness is far better in a world where your medical records and current prescriptions can be accessed electronically.

            why are you so opposed to recognizing the benefit of electronic medical records?

            it makes perfect sense to do this – no matter where you go for treatment.

            It’s almost as if electronic medical records are a govt evil or something.

          • This is the stuff of lawsuits. If you have a potentially serious condition – like heart arrhythmia – that even you may be unaware of – the Doc at the kiosk can’t perform a simple routine physical on you either to know that.

            You have outdone yourself this time, Larry, this is one of the stupidest things you have written recently, and you’ve previously provided great competition for that honor.

            Look. If you have an arrhythmia that even you don’t know about then it’s not part of your medical record – unless your regular doctor is keeping secrets from you – so having your medical history won’t help the kiosk doc. If you describe symptoms that might indicate an arrhythmia the kiosk doc will recommend further action on your part, like going to your regular doctor, as there may not be an EKG or MRI in the kiosk for his use in diagnosing you further.

            The kiosk doc may not be able to check your prostate in the kiosk either, nor can he biopsy that lump on your ass so he might recommend that you see your regular doctor for those also.

            This kiosk idea sounds like a great screening tool that may get more people diagnosed sooner – something I believe you’re in favor of – and allows far more diagnoses and recommendations to be made in a day, at lower cost than a traditional doctor’s office.

            No kiosk doc will get sued if he fails to diagnose your rectal cancer, but after talking with you for only a few minutes, I’m confident he could correctly diagnose your head-in-ass syndrome.

          • Are you Type II? Are you taking NSAIDs? do you have prosthetic implants, are you allergic? Have you had heart, kidney, liver problems and if so what was the nature of them?

            Yes, all ER docs ask those questions before they proceed to treat a patient lying unconscious, bleeding from three or four gunshot wounds.

            Lol Larry, you are such a comedian!

          • Nurse, please note that the patient refused to respond to my questions. we’ll just have to wait ’til he regains consciousness before we can treat him. What’s the next case?


          • re: asking for medical history -

            few people, even when conscious, can recall 20, 30, 40 years worth of information …

            and in an ER – you’re not talking about A nurse or A doctor, you’re talking about a dozen or more people ranging from the attending physician to the Catscan tech to the called-in specialist – as the patient gets moved from the intake area to the xray area to the ICU, etc.

            you may notice – there IS a CHART on a clipboard that goes with the patient but what is on the chart is a small snapshot of what they know and a whole lot of what they do not know is not on that clipboard unless they can gain access to the rest of the medical history.

            You may also note when drugs are advertised – at the end of the commercial or at the bottom of printed info where it says ” not for people with the following conditions”.

            Many drugs fall into these categories.

            what drugs, including ER injectables they can use on you depends entirely on the info in your medical history. If they don’t have that – they have to order tests – for instance, are you diabetic and if so for how long. Do you have a a stent somewhere in your body? Did you have an prior operation for some illness?

            these are vital pieces of information that the professionals need in order to make a correct diagnosis and appropriate path of treatment.

            I’m just not understanding why there is such virulent opposition to the concept of electronic medical records.

            Can someone here that is opposed, explain the arguments against them?

            we don’t need any name-calling or condescending insults.. just some plain dialogue.

          • You want some plain dialogue you won’t understand, Larry? Here’s some:

            Unless you’ve had major surgery (which you will remember) or massive trauma (which you are unlikely to forget), or a devastating disease like cancer (which you are also unlikely to forget), nobody gives a shit what happened to you 40 years ago.

            The reality is that masses of people are walking around with undiagnosed conditions from diabetes to auto-immune disease and a lot of doctoring is just guessing. Even if they have all of your history from the the moment Little Larry took up residence in his momma’s uterus.

          • Methinks – you may think this but virtually all doctors disagree with you little girl.

            that’s why you gotta sit with a clipboard when you see a new doc and it’s why most good Docs require you to have a physical exam.

            People don’t have to have 40 years of “history” to have a history that is relevant for a doctor to use to treat you.

            you are a piece of work girl.

      • Admiditly in the prisons the medical history is available. As physicians get more medical records put together it will help. I do suspect that there will be the 10 page form to fill out before the physician sees you just like today if you go to a new physician. Once the records are available this will diminish. Of course this is why they say to carry a list of medications you are talking with you.

        • yes.. there WILL be the 10-page form and beyond that what the DOC will actually do for you will be a limited subset of what he/she might do if they had your full medical record and/or could examine you physically.

          The Kiosks could become powerful market forces if those docs DID have access to your medical records AND they could ADD to them such that if you went to a different kiosk or a different doctor – he/she could pull up your history INCLUDING your last encounter and continue on from there.

          re: carrying a list of meds – it’s good but if the Doc is considering a drug that could have serious consequences if you “forgot” to tell him or your list was dated, he might be blamed so again, he’s not going to treat you with all available options and whatever he does is going to be a conservative approach to allow for what he may not know.

          Of course, all of this goes out the window if you are unconscious in an ER… at that point… without your history and med list – they are restricted in all that they might do or they have to risk what they don’t know which can lead to a lawsuit downstream so from their point of view.

          I think it’s naive to think a doc is going to treat you the same whether or not he has your history and a confirmed list of meds. When they have doubts, they order tests.

          I can’t figure out why some folks are so reactive to the idea of electronic medical records. It just seems to be a really good idea without much of a downside.

          • Lets assume its 10 years ago, and you had not been to a physician for a while what did the physician do but rely on what you told them? Even today if you transfer physicians your records may or may not follow, if they don’t then the physican has to rely on what they are told. For example in my case I suspect that before 6 years ago no medical records are connected, as I moved and no one asked about old physicans. Let alone records dating back to the 1960s and 1970s when I broke a leg and arm and had appendicitis. Physicians managed for years with this disconnected set of records, so they ask what medications you are taking, or may soon ask you to bring them with you. So you are saying that years ago docs in boxes did not treat folks?

          • actually, even if your records follow, the new physician takes a history.

            Part of the medical idiocy in America is that you have to see a doctor for everything. If you go to a pharmacist in Switzerland and show him your eczema, he’ll prescribe prescription-strength steroid cream, allowing you to skip the expensive and unnecessary step of trekking to the doctor. Americans think every bump and scratch is a complicated medical issue requiring the immediate attention of a doctor because the AMA has been busy protecting doctors from competition even in the most banal medical situation. Even worse, a doctor cannot prescribe more medicine for the same condition if he has not physically examined the patient within 12 months. Same eczema you’ve had all your life? No matter. You still have to come in for an exam so you can be charged $250.

  3. Taking down medical history has become an exigent pastime for nurses. In hospitals, patients get asked the same questions daily by an army of nurses who care not what has gone before. This is true, even when the patient is incapable of providing adequate answers.

    With Obamacare, this time wasting will only get worse.

    • Yes, good point. every new person who sees you from the moment you come in the door will apparently need another copy of that same information. I think it must be easier to ask you again than to go check to see what’s already been collected by others.

    • just FYI:

      ” The Veterans Health Information Systems and Technology Architecture (VistA) is an enterprise-wide information system built around an Electronic Health Record (EHR), used throughout the United States Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) medical system, known as the Veterans Health Administration (VHA).[1] It consists of nearly 160 integrated software modules for clinical care, financial functions, and infrastructure.”

      ” The VistA electronic medical records system is estimated to improve efficiency by 6% per year, and the monthly cost of the EHR is offset by eliminating the cost of even a few unnecessary tests or admissions.[8][9]
      The adoption of VistA has allowed the VA to achieve a pharmacy prescription accuracy rate of 99.997%, and the VA outperforms most public sector hospitals on a variety of criteria, “

        • nothing.. was responding to the prior thread on electronic records.

          but on the 2007 kiosk – the basic idea of “tele-medicine” has been around ever since communication technology allowed a “remote” connection.

          One of the modern day ironies is that the fax machine which has been replaced by electronic communications in many areas is STILL a primary means of moving information in the medical community.

          Many doctors still share blood tests, records, etc with referred doctors via FAX.

          • Heh! good old Larry. You don’t care who you respond to or what you respond to, you will manage to respond with something irrelevant.

            Good job, Larry.

  4. ;’.`

    Talk to you later
    <, while monitoring your blood pressure, you get a systolic reading of 180 mm Hg or higher OR a diastolic reading of 110 mm HG or higher, wait a couple of minutes and take it again. If the reading is still at or above that level, you should seek immediate emergency medical treatment for a hypertensive crisis. If you can’t access the emergency medical services (EMS), have someone drive you to the hospital right away.

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