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New telehealth station launching in Milam County

Published: Jul. 7, 2020 at 6:38 PM CDT
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CAMERON, Texas (KBTX) - New healthcare is launching in Milam County to give easier access for rural residents. The Texas A&M Health Science Center has partnered with a Tampa-based company to provide healthcare in a virtual setting. They hope to bring changes to the shortage of healthcare options in rural areas and shortage of access to doctors.

Tuesday morning OnMed held a demonstration of their new telemedicine station at the Milam County Sheriff’s Office in Cameron.

”It literally looks like someone standing in a window having a conversation with you so it’s very personable,” said Austin White, OnMed President and CEO.

A new medical pod inside the sheriff’s office lobby will give patients access to licensed clinicians. The six foot by six foot space brings a Certified Nursing Assistant and Nurse Practitioner right into the room in real time. Special equipment can take your vitals and temperature. High tech cameras can help the licensed clinicians make a diagnosis.

OnMed partnered with the Texas A&M Health Science Center for the project.

”Right now just living in a rural community is considered a health risk so we want to assess whether or not improving access to care with an innovation like the health care station by OnMed changes the outcomes,” said Joy Alonzo, a Texas A&M Health Science Center Clinical Assistant Professor.

“Milam County is actually a great test bed for the Texas A&M, OnMed healthcare station,” said Alonzo.

”This is a wonderful opportunity for a county who’s lost both hospitals, has no urgent care. We need this,” said Steve Young, Milam County Judge. Both of Milam County’s hospitals closed in 2018.

“We want this and we’re just excited to have this thing. We thank Texas A&M for coming to us and saying ‘do you want it’. We readily accepted. Thanks to OnMed for a great design. The technology here is unbelievable so we’re just delighted to have it here in the county,” said Young.

Affordability will also be a factor. OnMed’s CEO said the price will be no more than $65.

After your visit a nurse practitioner or pharmacist can also give you your prescription. It drops out just like a vending machine. If they don’t have it in stock they can call your local pharmacy or mail it to you.

A 21st Century solution to keeping people healthy.

“Timeliness was part of our thought process. The next process was diagnostic capability and the quality of care you were going to receive,” said White.

The new telehealth station will start seeing patients this fall. The Texas A&M Health Science Center said the booth will be at the Sheriff’s Office for up to two years while they study its impact. They will look at a future location for it in Milam County after that.

After each visit a special UV light inside also cleans the room killing germs and viruses.

If you’d like a demonstration of the new OnMed station you can email moonshotp2@tamu.edu or visit this link.

The Milam County Sheriff’s Office is located at: 512 North Jefferson Avenue, Cameron, TX 76520

Copyright 2020 KBTX. All rights reserved.

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