Tulane Expert teleConsulting (TEC) Improving Stroke Care Throughout Region

Tulane Expert teleConsulting (TEC) immediately brings neurologists experienced in stroke care to the bedside of patients in community hospitals that may not provide fulltime onsite specialty care physicians.

Efficient care can save lives and improve the quality of life for stroke victims. Only 5.5 percent of stroke patients in the nation receive IV-tPA, the only FDA-approved medication treatment for ischemic stroke. In order to be administered safely and effectively, the medication must be given within 4.5 hours of the onset of symptoms. Telemedicine provides immediate access to stroke expertise when onsite access is not available. 

The telemedicine program uses a mobile “robot,” which has an onboard computer, monitor, high-resolution camera and microphone. Within minutes, the local physician and patient can communicate with an experienced neurologist who can interview and examine the patient and discuss the diagnosis and options for treatment with the patient, family members and treating physician.  Medical data, including imaging scans, can also be transmitted. The local physician and neurologist can then develop and initiate a treatment plan.

Telemedicine, compared with telephone-only consultations, results in:

  • More accurate diagnosis
  • Better emergency decision making
  • Fewer complications
  • Positive long-term outcomes

Tulane Expert teleConsulting Member Hospitals

  • Bernard Parish Hospital – Chalmette, LA
  • Garden Park Medical Center – Gulfport, MS
  • Hood Memorial Hospital – Amite, LA
  • Lake Charles Memorial Hospital – Lake Charles, LA
  • North Oaks Medical Center – Hammond, LA
  • Prevost Memorial Hospital – Donaldsonville, LA
  • Rapides Regional Medical Center – Alexandria, LA
  • Riverside Medical Center – Franklinton, LA

Our goal is to keep as many patients in their home community as possible, but in the event treatment necessitates transfer to Tulane Health System, patients have access to our full staff of neuroscience experts and services.

About Tulane Expert teleConsulting (TEC)

Tulane’s accredited Comprehensive Stroke Program was awarded “Gold Plus” recognition by the American Heart Association, and Tulane is the first in Louisiana to receive the Target: Stroke Honor Roll – Elite Plus award. This is the highest achievement awarded from the American Heart Association, and it recognizes that more than half of our patients treated with tPA received the medication in less than 45 minutes from arrival.

Quality

  • Expertise and experience: Fellowship-trained neurologists and neurosurgeons are available 24/7, and we maintain a dedicated stroke unit/neuro-intensive care unit.
  • Team approach: Neurologists and neurosurgeons work as a team with ER physicians at spoke sites.
  • High treatment rate: Tulane Health System is the regional leader in IV tPA treatment rate. Last year, more than 90 percent of eligible patients received IV tPA.
  • Comprehensive care: Caregivers have access to endovascular therapy for emergent thrombectomy and treatment of ruptured aneurysms.
  • Favorable outcomes: More than 80 percent of Tulane’s IV tPA patients are discharged home or to an inpatient rehab facility.
  • Research: We participate in NIH-funded clinical trials in stroke prevention, acute treatment and rehabilitation and recovery.
  • Patient support: Former patients connect with caregivers and other patients through the Tulane Stroke Survivors Support Group

Technology & Resources

  • Transfer center: 24/7 access allows for seamless patient transfer should advanced care be needed.
  • Improved communication: Face-to-face interaction improves communication with patients, families and the medical team at the spoke site.
  • Reliable technology: Tulane uses the FDA-approved InTouch® Telemedicine System.
  • Stroke RESPOND®: Secure, web based charting tool that drives standard of care and best practices to improve patient outcomes.
  • Accessible diagnostics: CT images are uploaded for viewing with ease through SurePACS™.

Customer Service

  • Treatment close to home: Patients can receive individualized care in their own community.
  • Quick response: Our team will respond to any telemedicine call within 15 minutes.
  • On-Site training: Our team will conduct on-site training for ER teams.
  • Case reviews: The TEC team will conduct case reviews with the spoke site for continuous process improvement and quality assurance.
  • 24/7 support: A dedicated team of specialists is on-hand to ensure maximum up time and system readiness

For more information, please contact our stroke program office at (504) 988-3690.