Clinical Services

Oral Presentation

(CS3-01) TeleNICU : Creating a Sustainable Rural TeleNICU Program - A Real World Case Study

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

In Southern Illinois, very few hospital organizations deliver babies and when those organizations do, very few actually are capable of caring for a high risk newborn. Even in delivery, more often than not, no advanced practice clinician is available to help assist with the neonate if there are problems at the time of delivery. There are approximately 165,000 births in Illinois, with 8.3 percent being low birth weight (<2500 grams) and 2 percent being very low birth weight (<1500 grams). Ten percent of births are preterm (<37 weeks) and 31 percent of births either are scheduled or result in emergency cesarean section. Forty percent of births are to mothers who are unmarried and 15 percent of births are to mothers who did not graduate high school, increasing the likelihood of poor socio-economic and health status and less than optimum prenatal care. Fifteen thousand births were to mothers under the age of 20 and another 35,000 between the ages of 20 and 24. Six thousand births are twin births and 250 or more births per year are three or more babies. The infant mortality rate is 6.8 percent, higher than the U.S. infant mortality rate of 6.1, and ranking the state 27th in the world. This presentation focuses on an approach to providing TeleNICU services between a private practice Neonatology group and rural facilities who are Level I or Level II Nurseries. The development of the program will be covered which will explain the initial planning phase, development of a TeleNICU agreement, identification of appropriate nursery locations of TeleHealth equipment, the options for selecting and using TeleHealth equipment, what patient peripherals must be in place to conduct a full physical exam of the newborn, training of NICU nursing staff, clinical protocol development and other critical elements to implementing the program. Of specific interest to the learner will be a review of easy and practical methods for sharing health information and images when necessary, how to get documentation back to the referring NICU without complicated EHR interfaces, and selection of cost effective technologies that are easily integrated into the NICU environment.Outcome metrics will be shown including the number of newborn evaluations conducted, time from referral to evaluation (minutes), the number of transfers avoided and the cost/revenue implications of such, and the costs and risk/complications avoided when transfers are expedited. In addition, other pediatric subspecialties will be introduced that compliment the work done by the Neonatology team. Participants in birthing hospitals and those with a higher than normal emergency department birth rate will benefit from learning how to implement a cost effective TeleNICU program that maximizes return on investment for families, birthing hospitals, and neonatology groups.

Learning Objectives:

Nina M. Antoniotti

Executive Director for TeleHealth and Clinical Outreach
SIU Medicine

Dr. Nina Antoniotti is SIU Health Care’s Executive Director of TeleHealth and Clinical Outreach. Dr. Antoniotti received her diploma in Nursing from Akron General Medical Center, Akron Ohio; her Bachelors degree in Health Care Administration from St. Joseph’s College, Windham Maine; her Masters in Business from Cardianl Stritch College, Milwaukee, WI; and her Doctorate in Organizational Systems from Saybrook University in California.


Dr. Nina Antoniotti, is an internationally known leader in TeleHealth; is past Chair of ATA Standards and Guidelines Committee; past ATA Board Member, past-chair of ATA’s Policy Committee; and past VP of the Board of the Center for Telemedicine Law in Washington, DC. She currently serves ATA in many capacities, and is on the Standards and Guidelines Committee.

In 2007, Dr. Antoniotti received ATA’s President’s Award for Individual Achievement in advancing Telemedicine world-wide. She has been instrumental in developing sustainable models of TeleHealth with expertise in clinical operations, innovative deployment of technology, legal and regulatory issues in virtual care, public policy initiatives, and all aspects of delivering care at a distance. Dr. Antoniotti has many innovative was to cost effectively implement successful TeleHealth strategies in all health care settings.

In 2009, Dr. Antoniotti was inducted into ATA’s College of Fellows for contributions to the world of telemedicine and advancing virtual care around the globe. Dr. Antoniotti is also known for her work on deploying Telemedicine in China and Iran. Dr. Antoniotti is very well known for her willingness to help others be successful in their TeleHealth initiatives and in her vast knowledge used in consulting with organizations in starting, managing, and improving outcomes associated with the use of TeleHealth.

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(CS3-01) TeleNICU : Creating a Sustainable Rural TeleNICU Program - A Real World Case Study



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