Arizona Telepsychiatry Pilot Draws Praise From Doctors, Patients

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Banner Estrella Medical Center in southwest Phoenix this summer launched a telepsychiatry pilot program aimed at reducing the wait times for patients to receive psychiatric consultations, the Arizona Republic reports.

The program uses mobile, two-way, videoconferencing equipment to allow credentialed psychiatrists at Banner Behavioral Health Hospital in Scottsdale, Ariz., to provide evaluations of patients at Banner Estrella.

Since its launch, the pilot has received positive feedback from both patients and physicians, according to Banner Estrella spokesperson Mary Brandenberger.

After the pilot is evaluated, the program could be expanded to other Banner medical centers. The telepsychiatry program eventually could be adopted in all Banner hospitals, Brandenberger said (Madrid, Arizona Republic, 11/30).


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