New healthcare collaboration brings virtual exam kits to Orange County residents – Orange County Register
Virtual medical visits can be more convenient, accurate and cost-effective than ever, thanks to a new collaboration between MemorialCare and UnitedHealthcare that gives patients the technology to measure and transmit diagnoses directly to their doctor or provider.
UnitedHealthcare SignatureValue® Harmony HMO Plan members who choose MemorialCare as their primary care provider will receive a virtual exam kit at no additional cost as part of their benefits plan. Designed by TytoCare and roughly the size of a baseball, the exam kit uses Bluetooth® technology to connect to a patient’s smartphone or tablet. The kit comes with a high-definition camera and reusable accessories that allow a doctor to examine the patient in real time from the comfort of their home or workplace.
“The quality of the device is absolutely amazing,” said Mark Schafer, MD, CEO of MemorialCare Medical Foundation. “The kit allows us to go beyond the basic story the patient tells us to actually be able to examine their ears, examine their throat, listen to their lungs and heart, and help us with a more accurate diagnosis for respiratory infections, asthma and other things.”
The kit includes a thermometer, tongue depressor, otoscope and stethoscope. A blood pressure cuff is available separately. The magnified glasses, combined with a high-definition camera included in the kit, give the doctor a much better view than a traditional instrument, Dr. Schafer noted.
MemorialCare began offering the UnitedHealthcare SignatureValue Harmony plan to members earlier this year, adding the virtual exam kit to the package.
“We have worked together to develop a plan that strives to improve the delivery of care, convenience and experience for our members and encourages the continued use of virtual care, which people have become familiar with and embraced during the pandemic,” said Elizabeth Soberg, West Region General Manager. Officer, UnitedHealthcare. “MemorialCare is focused on the patient experience, and at Unitedhealthcare we have the expertise to combine this new technology with a health coverage plan for our members. »
In these post-pandemic times, maintaining optimal health is a matter of convenience, Dr. Schafer noted. “We can do these video tours in the evening; we can do them on weekends. We have 24/7 virtual emergency care with physicians and nurse practitioners trained to do virtual care, and we can also do it during the day with their primary care physician,” he said. he declares.
He pointed to the huge benefit the device offers young families and workers, as well as seniors who may have difficulty getting to their appointments.
“We have a lot of older people in our community, and it can be all day long and may require one or two family members to help them get to the doctor,” Dr. Schafer said. “With the MemorialCare Virtual Exam Kit, we can do an exam from the comfort of their home.”
Importantly, MemorialCare is the only local health system to offer virtual exam kits to UnitedHealthcare SignatureValue Harmony HMO members. The service is supported by an integrated system that provides information securely to the patient’s primary care physician.
Once the patient has received the kit, they should unpack it and familiarize themselves with it. Detailed instructions are included with the kit, and for those who need assistance, MemorialCare Virtual Ambassadors are available by phone to guide them and will even come to the patient’s home if needed.
UnitedHealthcare seeks to collaborate with groups of physicians who follow a best practice model of delivering quality, coordinated, and evidence-based care; use and share patient data between providers to help coordinate care; and leverage technology that helps make secure, reliable, and timely data sharing possible.
MemorialCare has been an important provider partner in Orange County for UnitedHealthcare, Soberg said. “They are involved with all of our commercial products and have been very active and proactive with us in terms of promoting affordability. They focus on the right things in terms of total cost of care, quality and member experience, and they have the capabilities to deliver.
Since the start of the pandemic, MemorialCare has made over 400,000 video visits. “Our Virtual Exam Kit is the wave of the future in providing consumers with personalized, quality healthcare, while meeting them where they are,” said Anne LaNova, Executive Director of Digital Experience. consumers at MemorialCare.
“It’s a nice combination of technology and a human touch so you can feel comfortable with the care you receive, and connect face-to-face with your provider,” a- she declared. “I think that has been our approach for all of our digital initiatives. It’s still health care, and it’s still compassion. We’re happy to be face to face – we just want it to be as convenient as possible.
The Virtual Exam Kit is available to UnitedHealthcare SignatureValue Harmony HMO Plan members who choose MemorialCare as their primary care provider. Patients and their family members or caregivers can easily and safely perform basic diagnostic tests at home and securely report results to their doctors.
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Phone (24/7): 877-696-3622
Health plan coverage provided by or through UnitedHealthcare Insurance Company, UHC of California and UnitedHealthcare Benefits Plan of California. Administrative services provided by United Healthcare Services, Inc., OptumRx, or OptumHealth Care Solutions, Inc. Behavioral health products are provided by US Behavioral Health Plan, California (USBHPC).
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