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Checking in on Local Telemedicine - KOAM TV 7

Checking in on Local Telemedicine

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PITTSBURG, KANSAS -

About a year ago, Psoriasis was ruining Lorrie Manasseh's life.

"White patches on my face, on my eyelids, on my head, on my arms, on my legs, everywhere. They're just huge, big, thick skin patches that just crack and bleed," said Lorrie.

But thanks to a specialist located more than a 1000 miles away in Virginia, Lorrie's skin has dramatically improved.

"Because I was able to see the doctor on telehealth, he was able to help me get the right medications and get it under control, and have me about 99% clear," said Lorrie.

Lorrie gives the telemedicine program at Pittsburg's Community Health Center of Southeast Kansas rave reviews, for not only increasing access to doctors but eliminating the commute to see them.

"Traveling was quite painful because any time you're sitting in one space for too long, the skin gets very irritated, said Lorrie.

About a year ago, CHCSEK was able to expand its telemedicine capabilities into other Kansas clinics, thanks to a $48,000 grant from UnitedHealthcare. They say besides the benefits outlined by Lorrie, Telehealth also reduces patient wait times by getting them access to specialists, quicker.

"There are essentially 80 counties of the 105 counties in Kansas that are rural or frontier, and just because you live in one of those counties, your quality of healthcare shouldn't be any different than anybody who lives in Wichita or Overland Park or Topeka," said UnitedHealthcare Community and State CEO of Kansas Kevin Sparks. 

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