Parkinsonís Treated Over Internet
> 6/24/2009 10:28:03 AM

At the Presbyterian Home nursing home in upstate New York, the many elderly patients with Parkinson’s Disease had to travel 10 times a year to see movement disorder specialists. Tony Joseph, the administrator of Presbyterian Home, decided that there had to be a better way. He formed a joint project with the University of Rochester Medical Center to bring specialist care into the nursing home through the Internet.

The pilot project covered 14 patients for six months. Subjects had visits with their doctors over a web camera, which allowed the doctor to evaluate symptoms, answer questions, and prescribe medications. With the help of a nurse at Presbyterian Home, the doctor was also able to administer standard motor tests.

Patients in the pilot program showed significant improvement. Not only were they more satisfied with their treatment, but they had greater motor function and general quality of life. These impressive results were achieved with nothing more than two laptops and two web cameras. Tony Joseph has already received a grant from New York and plans to expand the telemedicine program to other nursing homes.



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