Lugar Center Partnering to Enhance Rural Cardiac Care

Union Hospital's Richard G. Lugar Center for Rural Health, a nationally recognized leader in the development of telemedicine services, has partnered with local rural Emergency Medical Services (EMS) providers to incorporate state-of-the-art technology that will significantly benefit rural heart attack patients. A grant from the US Department of Health and Human Services' Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) Office for the Advancement of Telehealth (OAT) will enable the center to equip rural ambulances with the technology to provide rural patients with the highest level of cardiac care available (Grant # H2ARH20178).

lugar-center-imageParke and Vermillion Counties in Indiana are ranked in the highest category of heart disease deaths in Indiana, mostly due to geographical location. Patients requiring time sensitive care, such as heart attack victims, continue to face the rural challenge of far-away health services. The Physioglove is a device that is designed to combat this obstacle by immediately alerting emergency medical personnel of a heart attack and transmitting that information to a facility where care providers can be prepared for the patient's arrival and the provision of time-sensitive treatment.

On January 20th the State EMS Commission approved a one year pilot study to test the efficacy of the Physioglove device and enable all levels of providers the ability to administer the patient-assisted glove. Parke County EMS providers have already participated in advanced training and two ambulances have been equipped with the Physioglove technology. Vermillion County EMS will begin utilization of the Physioglove technology in March, 2012.

Tribune Star – December 28, 2011

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michelle-smith“Telemedicine has allowed our patients to receive the care they need right here in Sullivan, IN. In our current challenging economic times, the more dollars we are able to retain locally the better off our community will be.”

- Michelle Franklin, CEO
Sullivan County
Community Hospital