Telemedicine has been increasing in popularity in the last few years, and for good reason. Virtual doctor visits greatly improve access to care, saving a drive to a distant community clinic or a commute into the city to see a specialist based at an urban facility.
Trios Health in Kennewick has become one of the latest adopters of the service, launching Trios Urgent eCare January 26, which has already showed the rural benefits of telemedicine. The all-hours visits only cost $39 and save patients the difficulty of traveling, especially overnight in treacherous winter weather. It also allows the ER to focus on more serious illnesses and injuries.
Trios leaders monitored the telemedicine offerings at some of the larger health systems on the western side of the state, and followin
g the lead of UW Medicine — with which it has a strategic partnership — Trios decided to offer the service as well. Before unveiling Trios Urgent eCare to the public, the hospital opened it up to staff for a trial run, and the response was overwhelmingly positive. Night shift employees found it especially helpful, as it allowed them to see providers at a more convenient time.
Just after launching publicly, the hospital showcased the system at the Tri-Cities Family Expo January 27-28, where it got an equally warm reception. Now, after just two weeks, the system has already seen heavy usage.
“It’s been a slam dunk for us in terms of response,” said Lisa Teske, director of marketing and business development at Trios. “It’s filling a gap in terms of access locally. And those who have used it absolutely love it.”
WSHA recognizes the benefits of telemedicine, and expanding its usage is one of our legislative priorities. Click here to read more about Trios Urgent eCare in a news story in the Tri-Cities Herald. (Tim Pfarr)