Community Health Systems (CHS), which operates 198 affiliated hospitals in 29 states, is teaming-up with American Well to launch its telehealth offering. Called VirtualHealth Now, the service will provide patients with a more convenient way to access primary urgent care services after hours and on weekends.
“For more than 30 years, our organization has been keeping healthcare close to home for our patients,” said Lynn Simon, M.D., president of clinical services and chief quality officer for CHSPSC, LLC. “Healthcare consumers increasingly are seeking care that is easier to access and more convenient. In a highly connected and mobile world, it makes sense for us to leverage technology to deliver non-emergent care directly to patients in a manner they prefer.”
The first CHS-affiliated hospitals to launch the service are AllianceHealth Oklahoma and Rockwood Health System in Spokane, Washington.For years, CHS-affiliated hospitals have used telemedicine to provide specialty care to patients. This collaboration expands the organization’s telemedicine capabilities to primary care, allowing patients to receive a primary care consultation from home, work or any other location they choose.
The first CHS-affiliated hospitals to launch the service are AllianceHealth Oklahoma and Rockwood Health System in Spokane, Washington. Patients in those areas can consult with a physician via smartphone, computer or tablet 24 hours a day, seven days a week. After that, virtual doctor visits are heading to additional markets in Arizona and Pennsylvania.
VirtualHealth Now will be staffed by local community physicians, allowing patients to be treated in many cases by providers they know.