Direct to Consumer

Oral Presentation

(DTC3-01) ConnectER: Telemedicine Application for Post Emergency Care Follow Up

Sunday, April 23
1:45 PM - 2:14 PM
Location: W224 CD

Objectives
Overall Emergency Department (ED) visits have been on the rise of the past years. In an effort to meet some of these challenges to ED care and follow up, we initiated a telemedicine follow up program branded ConnectER. ConnectER is a mechanism for ED patients who have be recently discharged to follow up with an ED physician using a webcam or smartphone and video conferencing software. Despite receiving positive feedback from both providers and patients, the utilization of this service by our patients was surprisingly low. The purpose of this study is to better understand the different reasons of the low utilization rates by the patients and the factors associated with them.

Methods
This is a survey based study that took place at GW Emergency Department. GW hospital is an urban, academic, tertiary care center and level 1 trauma center with an 80,000 annual ED visits. Our study population consisted of patients between 18 and 85 years of age who were both discharged from our Emergency Department, between September 2015 to November 2015, and referred to the GW ConnectER (telemedicine) program. The list of patients was generated from a standardized report from the hospital EMR. The report included data such as demographics, contact information, discharge diagnoses and prescriptions, wait time, language, ESI level, and length of stay. A brief five-question survey instrument was administered by phone to evaluate follow up patterns and reasons for utilization of telemedicine or traditional services in follow up care.

Results
162 patients were referred to the Connect ER program between September 2015 and November 2015, and 122 patients enrolled in the study. 55 patients were contacted by phone and completed the survey. Of the 122 patients only 2% used ConnectER. Most of the patients reported they were not aware of the option of using the ConnectER service, even though it was included in their discharge instructions. 22 patients (40%) patient indicated that they would have used it if they know about option.

Conclusion
Though many patients appreciated telemedicine as a viable option for follow up in the post emergency care, the main barrier to using telemedicine is the lack of an efficient advertisement modality to both patients and providers. Based on this, we advise any institution utilizing telemedicine for post emergency care follow up to put more focus on the advertisement of their program.

Abdulaziz S. Almehlisi

Chief Resident
The George Washington University

Dr. Abdulaziz Almehlisi received his medical degree at King Saud University in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia in 2009. He then joined the Department of Emergency Medicine at King Saud University as a Teaching Assistant and completed a research fellowship at The George Washington University.

He is currently a Chief Resident at The George Washington University Emergency Medicine Program and will start a Telemedicine fellowship in July 2017.

Dr Almehlisi is interested in the utilization of TeleMedicine in acute resuscitation & critical care management in rural areas.

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Waddaa Redha

Telemedicine Fellow and Research Instructor
George Washington University

Dr. Waddaa Redha is a telemedicine fellow and a research instructor of emergency medicine at the Medical Faculty Associate (MFA) at George Washington University (GWU). In this role, he is actively involved in the different telemedicine activities at the MFA including Maritime Medical Access, ConnectER program, and the CareFirst project. With a background in medical education as he completed a medical education fellowship in 2016, he is also involved in the teaching of emergency care to medical students and residents at GWU. Dr. Redha is a practicing emergency physician who provides clinical care at the University and at the Veterans Affair Medical Center in Washington DC.

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Guenevere V. Burke

Assistant Professor
George Washington University

Dr. Guenevere Burke is an assistant professor of emergency medicine at the George Washington University (GW). In this role, she is actively involved in medical education and interdisciplinary graduate programs in health policy, health equity and healthcare technology. She is co-director of the Health Policy Scholarly Concentration at the School of Medicine and Health Sciences and the Residency Fellowship in Health Policy. She is the director of the Leaders for Health Equity Fellowship, an international health sector fellowship funded by the Atlantic Philanthropies. Dr. Burke is a board certified emergency physician who provides clinical care in traditional and telemedicine encounters through the GW Department of Emergency Medicine's ConnectER program, a unique offering that expands access to care for emergency patients. She is president-elect of the District of Columbia American College of Emergency Physicians.

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Raj Gadhia

Emergency Medicine
George Washington University

.

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Neal Sikka

Associate Professor, Emergency Medicine
George Washington University Medical Faculty Associates

Neal Sikka is an Associate Professor in the Department of Emergency Medicine and
a board certified emergency physician at The George Washington University
Hospital. He is the Director of the Innovative Practice Section at the GW Medical
Faculty Associates. Dr. Sikka oversees the GW MFA Telemedicine Communication
Center, is the Emergency Department Information System Physician Application
Manager, and is an active member of the GW mHealth Collaborative.
Dr. Sikka has been a faculty member of the Department of Emergency Medicine
since 2003, a Fellow of the American College of Emergency Physicians, and a
member of the American Telemedicine Association. He has published and spoken
extensively on medical informatics, telemedicine, mobile health, telestroke and
innovative medical practice and design. He has completed a McKesson Foundation grant studying the
use of SMS messaging in diabetic patients and a CMMI Innovation Challenge Grant
examining the use of telemedicine in home peritoneal dialysis. Currently, Dr Sikka and his team are conducting a CareFirst Foundation grant studying the impact of specialty consultations with a FQHC. He is involved in in
providing medical services via telemedicine to ships at sea, to remote clinics and
teams, as well as correctional facilities.

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