Your gift to Telehealth provides access to care with specialists and primary care providers through video and telecommunications technologies.


For more than 40 years, telehealth has been used to bring health care services to patients in distant locations SIU's Telehealth program provides access to care through virtual care strategies that bring our specialists and primary care providers to your location through video and telecommunications technologies. With more than 20 clinical specialties and subspecialties delivered via telehealth, care close to home is now a reality for many patients and their families. Close collaboration with local primary care providers is enhanced when telehealth is used. 

Telehealth benefits include

  • Improved Access – Not only does telehealth improve access to patients, but it also allows physicians and health facilities to expand their reach, beyond their own offices. Given the provider shortages throughout the world--in both rural and urban areas--telehealth has a unique capacity to increase service to millions of new patients.

  • Cost Efficiencies – Reducing or containing the cost of health care is one of the most important reasons for funding and adopting telehealth technologies. Telehealth reduces the cost of health care and increases efficiency through better management of chronic diseases, shared health professional staffing, reduced travel times and fewer or shorter hospital stays.

  • Improved Quality – Studies have consistently shown that the quality of health care services delivered via telehealth are as good as those given in traditional in-person consultations. In some specialties, particularly in mental health and ICU care, telehealth delivers a superior product, with greater outcomes and patient satisfaction.

  • Patient Demand – Consumers want telehealth. The greatest impact of telehealth is on the patient, their family and their community. Using Telehealth technologies reduces travel time and related stresses for the patient. Such services offer patients the access to providers that might not be available otherwise, as well as medical services without the need to travel long distances.

Sometimes telehealth is best understood in terms of the services provided and the mechanisms used to provide those services. Here are some examples:

  • Primary care and specialist referral services may involve a primary care or allied health professional providing a consultation with a patient or a specialist assisting the primary care physician in rendering a diagnosis. This may involve the use of live interactive video or the use of store and forward transmission of diagnostic images, vital signs and/or video clips along with patient data for later review.

  • Remote patient monitoring, including home telehealth, uses devices to remotely collect and send data to a home health agency or a remote diagnostic testing facility for interpretation. Such applications might include a specific vital sign, such as blood glucose or heart ECG or a variety of indicators for home-bound patients. Such services can be used to supplement the use of visiting nurses.

  • Consumer medical and health information includes the use of the Internet and wireless devices for consumers to obtain specialized health information and on-line discussion groups to provide peer-to-peer support.

  • Medical education provides continuing medical education credits for health professionals and special medical education seminars for targeted groups in remote locations. 

  • Networked programs link tertiary care hospitals and clinics with outlying clinics and community health centers in rural or suburban areas. 

  • Point-to-point connections using private high speed networks are used by hospitals and clinics that deliver services directly or outsource specialty services to independent medical service providers. Such outsourced services include radiology, stroke assessment, mental health and intensive care services.

  • Monitoring center links are used for cardiac, pulmonary or fetal monitoring, home care and related services that provide care to patients in the home.