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NEWS RELEASE

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
June 29 , 2009

St. Nicholas Hospital Launches a Wound Care Telehealth Program

Sheboygan, Wis. —The St. Nicholas Hospital Home Health Department will be the first home care agency in Sheboygan County to offer electronic and digital oversight of wound care patients by a satellite site and credentialed specialists.

Telehealth is the delivery of health-related services and information via telecommunications technologies. It is as simple as two health professionals discussing a case over the telephone, or as sophisticated as using videoconferencing between providers at facilities in two countries.

Telehealth encompasses preventive, promotive, and curative aspects. St. Nicholas Hospital will employ a format called store-and-forward telehealth. Digital images, video, audio, and clinical data are captured and "stored" on the field nurse's computer; then transmitted via a secure line, to the St. Nicholas Hospital Comprehensive Wound Care Center where they are studied by specialists and their input is provided.

St. Nicholas Hospital will use a computer program by McKesson called Horizon Homecare Wound Advisor™. It is an integrated disease management solution for centralized and in-home care that extends the reach of wound specialists, helping lead to higher-quality wound care for home health patients.

"Home Health and Hospice is very excited about the Wound Advisor program," said Tanya Smith, Director, St. Nicholas Hospital Home Health and Hospice. "It will enable our nurses to provide the best possible care and improve our outcomes in managing and healing the wounds of our home health clients through telehealth collaboration with the wound specialist at St. Nicholas Hospital."

Mary Verhage, RN, BSN, CWOCN, ACHRN, and Clinical Coordinator of the St. Nicholas Hospital Comprehensive Wound Care Center, worked closely with the Home Health Department to launch the program.

"Many of the patients we see at the Comprehensive Wound Care Center are home health patients," said Verhage. "Having the Wound Advisor program is an added advantage to home health patients because it can help decrease the number of visits they make to the Center because we can utilize telehealth."

A Home Health case manager will take photos once a week of wounds for patients in the home health program. If a patient's wounds have gotten worse, staff at the clinic will be able to view the photos and provide consultation to the home care nurse.

Incorporating a wound telehealth program for the St. Nicholas Hospital Home Health Department is one of the ways St. Nicholas Hospital continues to provide quality care to patients with the use of modern technology.

About St. Nicholas Hospital
St. Nicholas Hospital is a non-profit hospital sponsored by the Hospital Sisters of St. Francis located at 3100 Superior Avenue, Sheboygan, Wisconsin. Their mission and vision is to provide family-centered, compassionate care without regard for race, creed, or ability to pay. This is achieved through the core values of respect, care, competence, and joy.

To learn more, visit www.stnicholashospital.org .

CONTACT: Xue Yang
Marketing Assistant
St. Nicholas Hospital
3100 Superior Avenue
Sheboygan, WI 53081
920-459-4739
xyang@sns.hshs.org

 

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St. Nicholas HospitSt. Nicholas Hospital, 3100 Superior Avenue, Sheboygan, WI Ph:920-459-8300
 100 Superior Avenue
 Sheboygan, WI 53081
 920-459-8300