The first patients of Mariupol TB dispensary received the online consultation in Donetsk
October 4, based on Regional Clinical Tuberculosis Hospital (Donetsk city) and City TB Dispensary of Mariupol (Mariupol city), for the first time the TB "telemedicine" was launched.
The introduction of innovative information technologytakes place in all programs and projects of the direction "Health of the Nation" at the Rinat Akhmetov Foundation for "Development of Ukraine" in order to reduce the time and distance of Ukrainian patients for timely and accurate diagnosis and treatment, as well as the professional development of doctors.
Within the project, 4 TB dispensaries of Donetsk region (Kramatorsk, Mariupol, Shahtersk and Gorlivka cities) shall be linked to the Regional Clinical TB Hospital in Donetsk. The merger of medical institutions is needed to conduct online consultations by specialists of the Regional TB Hospital, as well as the appointment and correction of treatment regimens for patients with drug-resistant TB.
"The regional program "Stop TB in Ukraine" is being implemented by the Rinat Akhmetov Foundation for "Development of Ukraine" since 2007.Its best result we consider to be the reduction of TB incidence rate in Donetsk region by 26.5% in 2011 compared to 2006; and the reduction of TB mortality rate by 42%, respectively”, says Denis Denisenko, director of the Program. “We have created a unique possibility of remote consultation for patients, as well as the support for doctors from the leading experts".
Prior to introducing these technologies, the patients and doctors were obliged to go on their own to Donetsk for consultation or change of treatment scheme for drug-resistant TB.The project budget is UAH 800,000.
"Today is a historic day.We are dealing not just with new technologies, but with incorporation of innovative technology", says Anton Vladzimirsky, head of the Association of Ukrainian Telemedicine and e-Health. "It’s necessary to mention that even in the world there is no systematic approach to "Telemedicine" functioning in the field of TB. And here, in Donetsk region, at the regional level, we are building a system that will help us not only to consult patients, but also to solve a lot of administrative issues".
Thus, the project "Telemedicine" will reduce the time to define, modify the diagnosis and prescribe most appropriate treatment regimen. This shall consequently lead to more efficient and effective treatment of TB patients, and reduce the costs of doctors and patients.
The first connected to Regional Clinical TB Hospital became the Mariupol TB dispensary. Upon the project presentation the first online consultation for patients with multidrug-resistant TB in Ukraine was carried out. The scheme of treatment for 3 patients from Mariupol was determined.The experts were able not only to look through the medical history of patients online but also to discuss the issue with their doctors and ask questions about the course of treatment directly to patients who are unable to come to Donetsk.
"In Donetsk region the dispensaries are quite remote from each other, and the only MDR-concilium for the entire region is located in Donetsk.But with the introduction of online consultations, the patients are no longer needed to go to Donetsk; they can communicate with the doctors and get treatment regimen in their TB facility. Earlier, the document transfer took about 1-2 weeks, now we have the opportunity to send them online, and view X-ray pictures together with the doctors in the city, where the patient is being treated, and the experts of MDR-concilium in Donetsk", says Irina Starichkova, chairman of the concilium for MDR-TB. "Therefore, while working with our special patients the "Telemedicine" helps to solve not only an administrative function, but also the function of the epidemiological safety".
For more pictures go here.